Tuesday, 28 Jan 2020

UN harshly criticized Palestinian ministers who raise their salary for almost 70% in the middle of financial crisis suffers by the country


Nickolay MladenovNickolay Mladenov - The United Nations criticized the Palestinian Authority (PA) after it was revealed that ministers in the previous cabinet quietly raised their salaries by almost 70%. Based on leaked documents, the monthly salary of the Palestinian Authority ministers in 2017 increased from USD 3,000 to USD 5,000.

The UN peace ambassador to the Middle East, Nickolay Mladenov, said the action "made no sense and angered the public" when Palestinians faced economic difficulties. Mladenov added he had spoken with Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh, who promised to end the practice. Shtayyeh himself had ordered an investigation. And during the investigation the ministers will still receive their salaries but only half of it.

In an interview with the New York Times published on Wednesday, June 5th 2019, Shtayyeh warned that the Palestinian Authority's finance was so difficult, they were experiencing a "collapse situation" and could go bankrupt in July or August.

The financial crisis was exacerbated this February by a dispute with Israel over the transfer of tax and tariff revenues it collects on the PA's behalf.

Israel announced it would freeze the transfer of about $139m (£109m) - an amount it said was equal to that paid by the PA in 2018 to families of Palestinians jailed by Israel or killed while carrying out attacks.

Israeli officials say the payments incentivise terrorism. But the PA insists they are welfare payments for relatives of prisoners and "martyrs".

The PA responded to the freeze by refusing to accept any further Israeli revenue transfers, which account for about half its budget.


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