Israel may agree to release Palestinian funds

Israel is prepared to transfer withheld tax revenues to the Palestinians through a mechanism providing that none of the money will go to the Hamas-led government, Israeli officials said on Thursday.

Israel may agree to release Palestinian funds
Israel is prepared to transfer withheld tax revenues to the Palestinians through a mechanism providing that none of the money will go to the Hamas-led government, Israeli officials said on Thursday.

The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the United States and European Union have been discussing the issue and that Israel would be ready to release funds once a mechanism with sufficient safeguards were agreed upon and put in place.

Israel has long rejected European calls to transfer Palestinian tax revenues, now totaling some $700 million.

But Israel finds itself increasingly isolated on the money issue. The United States joined the EU, U.N. and Russia in a statement on Wednesday say Israel to consider freeing up the funds through a special European Union mechanism.

The Temporary International Mechanism provides direct payments to the Palestinian Authority's non-security work force, bypassing the Hamas-led government.

Last Mod: 31 Mayıs 2007, 14:59
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