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January 2, 2014 5:55 pm

How the Palestinian Authority Fleeced the European Union

avatar by Ilya Dubinsky

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EU flag. Photo: S. Solberg J.

The European court of auditors recently recommended that the European Commission stop wasting money on Palestinian Authority employees – who do not come to work. The report where this recommendation is found is quite the read.

Palestinians are directly funded by the EU through a program called “Pegase DFS (direct financial support).” Between 2007 and 2012, the Palestinians received 1.4 billion Euro – not in some lousy trifles as flour or diesel fuel, but in hard cash.

According to the report, since 1994, the EU and some of its country-members have provided the Palestinian people (to be precise, some certain representatives of the Palestinian people) with financial support of nearly €5.6 billion.

Only after 18 years, in 2012, was an audit held. UNRWA, a UN agency of similar persuasion, had its first independent audit at its jubilee 50th anniversary. These audits are no doubt a Zionist plot.

The auditors, admittedly, do show compassion to Palestinians and condemn vile crimes of the Zionist regime. For instance, the report finds that the PA’s fiscal difficulties “are to considerable degree due to the continuing restrictions placed on it by Israel.” But the report does reveal some startling truths.

The Palestinian Authority, for example, receives funding through ENPI (the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument). Besides the PA, the Instrument provides funding to Algeria, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Egypt, Georgia, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Lybia, Moldova, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia, and Ukraine. The total population of these countries is 284 million people and out of this number, Palestinians, including Gaza denizens, comprise 1.5 percent. But since Palestinians need the money much more than, say, Syrian refugees fleeing a civil war, the PA receives 20 percent of the total ENPI funding.

This ridiculous amount is only 40 percent larger than the annual budget of Sydney, Australia, a city of roughly the same population. Where has this money gone?

According to the audit, the money was first allocated in 2004 to support economic and political reforms. By 2007, other funding had increased significantly. The reforms themselves, however, didn’t go so well; at the time of audit, there was a new, much better action plan being written. In other words, the PA never committed to actually reform anything, they just took the money.

There once was a show called “Supermarket Sweep,” in which the participants went on a timed race through a supermarket, stuffing their shopping baskets with goods and groceries and were allowed to keep whatever they could grab. This, more or less, is the picture that comes to mind when one reads about the annual process of budgeting aid for the Palestinian people.

Pegase’s funding is decided upon nearly blindly, and there is no accountability. This is all in the report.

But don’t think that the money is disbursed at random. Not at all, there are strict rules and procedures for selecting only the worthy civil servants of the PA who can receive it. How many people get their salaries thanks to Pegase? According to the audit, between 2008 and 2012, the number of civil servants and pensioners who were regularly receiving part or all of their salary via Pegase had increased from 75,502 to 84,320 (by 11%), which comprises approximately one half of the total of 170,000 employees and pensioners of the Palestinian Authority. At the same time, the total average monthly salary of these people had increased by 37 percent.

The audit says that the PA tries hard to limit the growth in public sector employment to a modest 3,000 people yearly. However, even this increase in workforce is an additional burden on the already overstretched PA budget, because Palestinian leaders make no effort to reform the PA or make structural changes.

The fact that in Gaza employees do not show up for work, but do collect their paychecks, is by now well known. When the board of auditors selected at random 10 employees from Gaza for interviews, three admitted openly that they do not work.

It is not clear how, if at all, this has been explained by the Palestinians. I believe it wasn’t. How can you explain to these Europeans, strangers to the hardships of Israeli occupation, why you need free money?

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  • david

    Putting the kleptocrats out of work will only increase unemployment.

  • E Pluribus Wombat

    Europeans are happy to outsource another potential holocaust for a few billion Euro.

  • Mike

    It is what it is:
    After the Nazis killed the Jews and stole their property now the Europeans fund those in the Middle East that want to kill Jews and steal their property.

  • Rami de Lieme

    All these reports will not change the attitude of Hamas, the EU or PA.
    It might take at least three years repeating these reports untill the EU parlement may wake up and as long as Barones Ashton the Islam lover is there, nothing will change.

  • Miri

    And the Palestinians claim the have no money and the people of Gaza are living in squalor.
    Of course they have no money – for the people. The actual people aren’t important. Buying weapons is, attacking Israel and innocent Israelis is, fattening up their own pockets and off shore bank accounts is. If the people were happy, the parties ruling them wouldn’t be able to incite them with all their anit-Israel malarky.
    Man the world hasn’t changed one bit, Europe especially, in the last 100 years. One would think we are still living in the Middle Ages.

  • Elliott

    The Pals – professional schnorrers! The ultimate welfare State…

  • Salomon Mizrahi

    Europe is very, very rich, they have close to 2 trillion euros in their central bank…
    What means to them few hundred million dollars, if the objective is to fight the Jews?

    • kriskristian1

      Like Arafat, Abbas has become an extremely wealthy man.
      Where did he gat the money from?

      A rafat stole hundreds of millions from the people he was supposed to lead.
      Arafat became a billionaiare. His widow lives in luxury in Paris. Where did she get that kind of money

      Time for the world to wake up to the swindlers who stael money meant for the poor

  • Better late than never.

    The EU’s mismanagement can be traced back to 2003 when Chris Patten – the predecessor of Catherine Ashton at the EU – was in charge of transferring $10 million/month to the Palestinians, while irrefutable evidence showed much of this money being used in terror activities by Fatah.

    When asked about investigating the matter, Patten said: “I need an investigation like a hole in the head.”