Bennett Flash 90

Israel's Security Cabinet approved Defense Minister Naftali Bennett's proposal to cut NIS 149 million ($43 million) from the tax funds that Israel transfers to the Palestinian Authority, due to the NIS 149 million that the PA paid to terrorist families last year.

Deputy Defense Minister Avi Dichter who initiated the "Pay to Slay" law deducting terrorist salaries from the funds transferred to the PA, responded: "I congratulate Minister Bennett on bringing the report for Cabinet approval following a law I passed in the Knesset with [Yesh Atid] MK Elazar Stern. For too long we have allowed the Palestinian Authority to pay salaries to terrorists. The party is over with the law we passed in the Knesset."

"As long as the Palestinian Authority continues to pay salaries to terrorists, it will be deducted from their tax money until the last shekel," Dichter promised. "There will be no compromises in the war of protecting Israel's citizens."

According to the law to freeze funds that the PA paid for terror purposes, which was approved in July 2018, the Defense Minister will bring a detailed report of the funds that the PA paid to terrorists and their families in the past year to the Cabinet for approval at the end of each year.

The following year, a 1/12 of the total amount determined by the report will be frozen each month from the tax money that Israel transfers to the Palestinian Authority.

To date, Israel has deducted only the salaries transferred to Palestinian prisoners, released prisoners and their families, which reached NIS 500 million ($145 million) in 2018.

As mentioned, the Cabinet approved Bennett's proposal to deduct a sum of NIS 149 million, which is the tax money that the Palestinian Authority transferred to the families of "martyrs" and those wounded in terror attacks against Israeli citizens in 2018. The report is compiled by the National Headquarters on Terrorist Economic Counter-Terrorism in the Defense Ministry in coordination with the GSS, the IDF, the Israeli police and Israel's Prison Services.

The new amount will be added to the previous amount and will stand at an annual amount of approximately NIS 650 million ($188 million) in 2018. Following the approval of cabinet ministers, the money will be deducted and frozen from the taxes that Israel transfers to the Palestinian Authority.

The move is added to a series of actions initiated by Minister Bennett in the economic sphere against terrorism, including signing initial orders in recent weeks to pursue terrorists around the world and signing an order last week to confiscate funds from Israeli -Arab terrorists.

The money deducted comes out of Palestinian Authority taxes collected by Israel on the PA's behalf from PA residents working in pre-1967 Israel.