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January 8, 2023 4:21 pm

Israeli Minister Funnels Frozen Palestinian Funds to Terror Victims

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MK Bezalel Smotrich. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

i24 NewsIsraeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich on Sunday evening signed an order approving the distribution of nearly $40 million of frozen Palestinian funds to the families of the victims of terrorism.

According to a ruling by the Jerusalem District Court, the Palestinian Authority is responsible for several terrorist acts against Israelis due to its notorious ‘pay-for-slay’ stipends to terrorists’ families. Smotrich told reporters during a briefing that he approved the distribution of the funds to victims of Palestinian attacks.

“There is no justice greater than deducting money from the (Palestinian) Authority that worked to support terrorism and transferring it to the families of victims of terrorism,” he said.

“There is no real solace for the families of those murdered, but there is justice,” Smotrich added, thanking Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and cabinet members for supporting his proposal.

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In response to a question whether he fears such moves will lead to the collapse of the Palestinian Authority, Smotrich replied: “As long as the Palestinian Authority encourages terrorism, I have no interest in its continuing to exist.”

“Victims of terrorism thank the Minister of Finance for deciding to stop the legal torture that families are suffering, and from now on they will receive the compensation money they deserve,” said the president of the organization Shurat Hadin, the lawyer Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, who represents the victims of terrorism.

A family that has been affected by terrorism and has not received compensation as required by the authority, can now apply for one. Since Israel collects taxes for the Palestinian Authority, it can deduct money from the funds that the Authority owes to the families and transfer the compensation to them.

This decision was approved during the first cabinet meeting of the new government at the end of last week. Palestinian officials condemned the Israeli measures and said they will continue trying to gain support abroad.

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