The Palestinian Authority confirmed on Monday that it has been providing grants
to security prisoners Israel released in August and October.
The PA said,
however, that the sums mentioned by Israel – up to $50,000 for each former
inmate – were “inaccurate” and “exaggerated.”
The Office of the IDF
Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories said in a report that
Palestinians who spent more than 25 years in prison had received $50,000
In addition, each freed prisoner will receive the status of a
deputy minister or the rank of major-general in the PA security forces – both
worth a monthly stipend of NIS 14,000.
A senior Palestinian official told
Israel Radio that the goal of the largesse is to enable the newly released men
to “begin their lives anew and reacclimate themselves to society.”
Abed Rabbo, the most veteran of the 52 prisoners released, received a $60,000
bonus and the PA also offered to cover the expenses of his wedding. Abed Rabbo
was convicted of murdering two Israelis near Bethlehem in 1984.
Prisoners Affairs Minister Issa Qaraqi confirmed that the released prisoners
were receiving “humanitarian” aid from the PA government to enable them to live
“decently” in Palestinian society.
“We are making efforts to help the
released prisoners,” Qaraqi told the Ma’an news agency. “Most of them need
medical treatment and some will have to begin their lives from zero to build a
house and marry.”
Qaraqi said that the figures mentioned by Israel were
“exaggerated” and “inaccurate.”
He accused Israel of incitement and said
that this was an internal Palestinian affair.
“Israel has no right to
meddle in our internal affairs,” he said. “This is an Israeli attempt to
pressure the international community that supports the Palestinian
“The world thinks it’s funding peace, but instead the
Palestinians fund terror,” Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon said of the
benefits given to freed terrorists.
“Their aid money is used to give
massive grants to terrorists.
The world must stop sending money to the PA
until it stops funding terror.
Deputy Minister for Liaison with the
Knesset Ofir Akunis said the PA is actively encouraging terrorism and the result
is apparent. He called for an end to prisoner releases.
makes more gestures, the Palestinian leadership continues to feed the fire of
violence and encourage terror,” Akunis said. “The grants to villainous murderers
shows the true face or our so-called partners for peace, and is further proof
that they did not come to the negotiating room with clean hands.”