In response to the success of United Nations (UN) initiatives, on Friday Israeli occupation authorities decided to seize NIS139 million ($39 million) from tax revenues collected on behalf of the Palestinian Authority (PA), Israeli media reported.
Last Friday, the UN General Assembly approved a resolution requesting that the International Court of Justice weigh in on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Israeli annexation and the “legal status of the occupation.”
The new Israeli government pledged to take punitive measures against the PA should it promote its initiatives at the UN.
After the success of the PA’s initiative, the Israeli security cabinet approved the sanctions, which included seizing tax revenues Israel collects on behalf of the PA and paying them to Israeli victims of “terrorism”.
They also included deducting the payments the PA makes to Palestinians imprisoned or killed by the Israeli occupation and their families, freezing Palestinian construction in much of the occupied West Bank and cancelling Palestinian VIP benefits.
Nabil Abu Rudeineh, the spokesperson of PA President Mahmoud Abbas, said that the measures announced by the Israeli occupation’s government in response to Palestine’s move at the UN: “Are condemned and rejected.”
In a statement, he expressed: “Palestinian rights are non-negotiable, and our Palestinian people and its leadership are capable of protecting Palestinian rights that have been endorsed by the resolutions of international legitimacy, whatever the price.”
He added: “We will continue our political, diplomatic and legal struggle to end the Israeli occupation of the land of the State of Palestine and its capital, East Jerusalem.”
The Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas strongly condemned the Israeli punitive measures against the PA and called on it: “Not to give in to such threats and work towards prosecuting the Israeli occupation leaders for their violations against the Palestinian people’s rights, land and holy places.”