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Report: 28% of Palestinian Authority budget dedicated to security

The Arab Organisation for Human Rights in UK (AOHR UK) said in a statement on Monday that the budget of the Palestinian Authority (PA) for 2014 witnessed great disparity between the amounts allocated to each ministry and that the security sector received the lion share of the budget.

Citing data released by the Palestinian Ministry of Finance, the Organisation said that security sector expenses accounted for 28 per cent of total expenditure throughout 2014.

According to ministry data, the total security expenses over the past year amounted to over $1 billion out of the Palestinian total budget of $3.9 billion. The data revealed that security expenses increased by 9 per cent compared to 2013, which is twice the amount allocated to the Ministry of Health.

The data also showed that the Ministry of Agriculture expenses during 2014 reached nearly $27 million, while the Ministry of Education received $722 million and the Ministry of Health about $512 million.

AOHR UK said the PA employs nearly 70,000 individuals in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, who are distributed among the six security agencies: the police, Preventive Security, General Intelligence, Military Intelligence, National Security Forces and the Presidential Guards.

The organisation said the figures indicate that the PA has neglected its basic role as representative of the Palestinian people and turned into a security agency that protects the interests of the Israeli occupation.

AOHR UK called on the PA to resume its responsibility towards the Palestinian people and use the budget to finance developmental projects instead.

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