Palestinian government still paying terrorists as US aid pours in

Non-public State Department report confirms Palestinians are not keeping their promises

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas/Getty Images

Adam Kredo • October 18, 2022 5:25 p.m.

The Palestinian government continues to pay stipends to imprisoned terrorists and incite violence against Israel, even as the Biden administration provides nearly half a billion dollars in US taxpayer funds to the government, according to an unofficial report. report from the State Department recently provided to Congress.

The Palestinian Authority, which pledged to end such acts in order to receive further installments of US aid, “continued payments to Palestinian prisoners who had committed acts of terrorism, as well as to the families of the self-determined. called ‘martyrs’ who died committing acts of terrorism,” according to the report, a copy of which was reviewed by the Free Washington Beacon. Official Palestinian government media organizations and social media accounts “also broadcast or published content praising or celebrating acts of violence.”

The details of the State Department report are likely to fuel congressional opposition to the Biden administration’s renewal of Palestinian Authority funding, which almost immediately resumed when the Democratic administration took office. US aid has been cut by the Trump administration due to PA support for terrorism, as well as a bipartisan US law requiring US aid to be frozen until the Palestinian government ends to its policy of paying terrorists, also known as “pay to kill”. This law, the Taylor Force Act, was passed in 2018 and prohibited the State Department from allocating aid to the Palestinian government until it could certify that payments to terrorists and incitement against Israel have ceased.

A State Department spokesperson said the administration opposes the Palestinian murder program and has repeatedly urged the Palestinian Authority to stop it. The official also said that all US aid is allocated according to law.

The information contained in the latest State Department report indicates that the conditions for assistance provided by law are not being met. Since April 2021, the United States has provided “more than half a billion dollars in aid to the Palestinians”, according to the State Department. In July, President Joe Biden announced an additional $316 million would be given to “support the Palestinian people”, according to the White House.

“First, the administration tried to mislead Congress about Palestinian terrorists and payments to terrorists, which unfortunately worked long enough for them to transfer money to the Palestinian government,” said one. senior congressional official who works on Middle East issues. Free Washington Beacon. “Now they don’t care.”

The State Department collected evidence showing that “elements of the Palestinian leadership made individual statements that appeared to support the violence,” according to the report. “Conventional media and Palestinian Authority social media also aired problematic comments and videos.” This came as Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas condemned a recent spate of terror attacks in Israel and “maintained a public stance against incitement to violence and terrorism.”

The Palestinian government’s official media has been called “inconsistent” in its enforcement of prohibitions on incitement to terrorism, according to the State Department. Social media accounts affiliated with Abbas’ Fatah party, for example, “featured content praising or condoning acts of violence”.

The Fatah Youth Movement at Najah University in the West Bank territory ‘hailed the December 2021 killing’ of an Israeli civilian as a ‘heroic operation’, according to information compiled by the State Department . Palestine TV also aired footage of “a young girl in an elementary school in Jenin” reciting a poem “asking God to banish the Jews from the area”.

In March, the official Palestinian Authority news agency, Wafa, posted on Facebook a celebration of terrorist Dalal al-Moghrabi, who killed 38 Israelis, including 13 children, in a 1978 bombing. hailed al-Moghrabi as “the icon of struggle and resistance”, according to the State Department.

The Biden administration has given more than $417 million in humanitarian aid to Palestinian refugees through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, which is known to advocate against Israel, and terrorists have used its schools as a base of operations. The U.S. Agency for International Development has granted some $75 million in humanitarian assistance, and $20.5 million has been allocated for COVID relief and “Gaza recovery assistance,” the department says. of state.

Jonathan Schanzer, regional expert and senior vice president for research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, said the Palestinian Authority and its splinter groups are increasingly polarized.

“The incitement continues unabated on the part of the Palestinian Authority,” Schanzer told the Free tag. “In recent months, this has been accompanied by violent splinter factions of entities closely allied to the Palestinian Authority. All of this could backfire on the Palestinian Authority, which has not exactly been popular or stable. Washington has the duty not only to apply its own It has an obligation to preserve the system it created and which today appears increasingly fragile.

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