Prime Minister, Mohammed Shtayeh, called on Norway to pressure Israel to release in full the Palestinian tax revenues, reiterating that the decision to deduct from the tax revenues is illegal and violates signed agreement.
This came during a meeting held at the PM office in Ramallah with Helda Haraldstad, Representative of Norway to the Palestinian Authority, where they discussed the latest political developments and the donors’ conference scheduled to be held next month in Brussels.
The PM stressed the need for the international community to take serious steps to curb Israel’s violations against the Palestinian people and not only by issuing condemnation statements.
He praised Norway’s position and its continued support for Palestine, saying that it comes from Norway’s belief in the values of justice, peace, and equality, hoping for its continuation until the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.
In February, Israel entered into effect a law passed last year deducting millions of dollars in tax revenues collected by Israel every month on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, equal to the amounts of the salaries the PA pays to the Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails and the families of those killed by the Israeli occupation forces.
Under the interim Paris Economic Protocol of 1994, Israel collects customs duties on goods imported by Palestinians and destined to the occupied Palestinian territories (West Bank and Gaza) that go through Israeli ports since the Palestinian borders are all under Israeli control.
Israel has occasionally withheld Palestinian money as a measure of punishment.