PM Netanyahu with French President Nicolas Sarkozy 311 (R).
(photo credit: REUTERS/Benoit Tessier)
France on Monday said it would transfer 10 million euros to the Palestinian Authority to help pay the salaries of civil servants. The announcement comes after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu met with French President Nicolas Sarkozy and asked him not to send funds to the PA until it was clear that the money would not end up in the hands of Hamas.
France rejected the request and on Monday urged all donor countries to continue to fund the PA. It also called on Israel to continue to transfer tax funds to the PA. Israel earlier this month suspended such payment of funds.
“We deplore the suspension of the most recent transfer. This is detrimental to the continuation of the reforms and the establishment of the Palestinian institutions under the authority of President Abbas,” a French Foreign Ministry spokesman said.
In Washington, Deputy State Department spokesman Mark Toner said it was
premature to cut off aid to the PA until more information was available
with regard to the new Fatah-Hamas government.
“As the new Palestinian government is formed, we’ll assess it based on
its policies and we’ll determine the implications for our assistance,”
Toner said. “We’re looking to see what this reconciliation agreement
looks like in practical terms, and before we make any decisions about
“What’s important now, as I said, is that the Palestinians ensure that
any implementation of this agreement is done in a way that supports the
process of peace.”