“The [PLO] Executive Committee condemned the legislators of the American Congress and their positions towards the Palestinian people” saying the ending of monthly payments to terrorists and their families is ‘unacceptable’ and that the Senators are engaging in ‘extortion,’ in order ‘to extract political concessions.’
The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) criticized the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee over the weekend for advancing legislation that would penalize the Palestinian Authority for its continued policy of financially rewarding terrorists and their family members, according to a report this week by Palestinian Media Watch.
The bill, referred to as the “Taylor Force Act,” is named after a US military veteran who was killed in a terror attack in Israel last year. In its report, Palestinian Media Watch translated a statement that was posted on Facebook about the meeting by Bethlehem’s branch of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah party.
“The [PLO] Executive Committee condemned the legislators of the American Congress and their positions towards the Palestinian people… and sees the American Senate Committee on Foreign Relations’ approval of stopping American aid to the PA – if it does not stop the aid to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners – as an unacceptable act that will negatively affect everything that is connected to the Palestinians’ rights, and particularly their right to life and protection from the occupation army’s violations, and [from] the summary executions that it carries out in the streets and military checkpoints of the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem,” the statement read.
The PLO’s Executive Committee also accused the Senate Foreign Relations Committee of engaging in “extortion” in order “to extract political concessions.”
US Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee, who serves as Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, stressed that the bill was only aimed at removing the long-held practice of paying salaries to terrorists and their families.
“It’s meant to change the behavior of the Palestinian Authority…but not intended to hurt the Palestinian people that have nothing to do with this law that’s been put in place by their government,” Corker had said after the Committee’s vote on August 3.
Corker also referenced testimony from Palestinian prisoners who were incentivized by the PA policy, to commit acts of terror.
“In interviews with prisoners in Israeli jails who had committed these acts, they clearly stated their goal was to ensure that they did something egregious enough to at least get a five-year sentence where the payment is stepped up,” he added.
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