Secretary-General of the Palestinian National Initiative Mustafa Barghouthi. (Photo: wiki)
Secretary-General of the Palestinian National Initiative Mustafa Barghouthi. (Photo: wiki)

Al-Quds, 14 Rabiul Awwal 1436/5 December 2015 (MINA) – A top Palestinian official has condemned Israel’s freeze of Palestinian tax revenues as illegal and tantamount to theft.

Secretary-General of the Palestinian National Initiative Mustafa Barghouthi said Sunday that Tel Aviv’s decision to withhold tens of millions of dollars worth of Palestinian tax money is in fact an act of piracy, Press Tv quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting.

“What Israel is doing is theft, piracy and illegal,” Barghouthi said, adding, “Tel Aviv has no right to withhold money paid by the sweat and blood of the Palestinian people.”

Barghouthi said Israel must face sanctions and be boycotted over its outrageous violations.

He also called on the Palestinian authorities to stop all sorts of security coordination with Israel.

On Saturday, top Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat similarly condemned the Israeli move, saying Tel Aviv cannot divert Palestinians from moving toward freedom and independence through economic pressure.

Israel on Friday halted the transfer of taxes it collects on behalf of Palestinians in retaliation for their application to join the International Criminal Court (ICC).

The Tel Aviv regime made the decision after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas signed the documents required for Palestine to join 20 international organizations, including the ICC.

Abbas signed the request to join the ICC after the United Nations Security Council rejected a Palestinian proposal for statehood on Tuesday.

In 2012, following Palestine’s wining of a UN vote acknowledging it as a non-member state, Tel Aviv again delayed payments to the Palestinians.

After foreign aid is deducted, tax revenues account for around two-thirds of the Palestinian Authority’s yearly budget. (T/P011/R03)


Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)