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Jordan: Abbas Rejects Solution To Financial Crisis
Jordan's King Abdullah II (R) welcomes Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas at the Royal Palace in Amman on December 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / KHALIL MAZRAAWI

Jordan: Abbas Rejects Solution To Financial Crisis

Jordanian officials are reportedly furious at the head of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, claiming that his conduct regarding the economic crisis facing the PA could result in bankruptcy and violence that threatens to spill over into Jordan, it was reported by the Hebrew daily Israel Hayom.

A senior Jordanian source said a proposal to solve the economic crisis was rejected by Abbas and that he forbade senior Palestinian officials to meet with Israeli officials.

Last week, Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mohammed Shtayyeh admitted that the PA was close to insolvency after months of refusing to accept Israeli payments due to a new Israeli anti-terrorism law that allows Israel to withhold part of the Palestinians revenue that pays the salaries of terrorists in jail and their families. The PA also has a debt to the Israel Electric Corporation, which is billions of shekels.

For months the Palestinians have refused to accept the hundreds of millions of shekels that Israel transfers to the Palestinian banks and it was announced recently that PA public officials will receive only half of their monthly salaries due to the difficult economic situation.

According to senior officials in Amman, Abbas rejected a proposal by Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates to solve the crisis in the PA by supplementing the amount that Israel offsets for the salaries of the terrorists and their families. It was further agreed by Jordan that Israel would cease to offset the debts of the Palestinian Authority to the Israel Electric Corporation and establish a joint Israeli-Palestinian committee to reach an agreed solution to the amount of the debt.

Several meetings on the matter had already taken place between Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon and Palestinian Minister Hussein Al-Sheikh.

It was also reported that during the recent visit of Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblat to the Middle East, the Palestinians were offered that if they agreed to take part in the upcoming economic conference in Bahrain, the US would commit to a generous package of aid to Ramallah, a proposal which Abbas also rejected.