Israel sends Palestinians over $1 billion in withheld funds

Israel sends Palestinians over $1 billion in withheld funds
A Bedouin man walks with a Palestinian flag in the village of Khan Al-Ahmar in the Israeli-occupied West Bank on November 29, 2020. (File/AFP)
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Updated 02 December 2020

Israel sends Palestinians over $1 billion in withheld funds

Israel sends Palestinians over $1 billion in withheld funds
  • The Palestinians stopped coordination with Israel in May in response to Israeli plans to annex parts of West Bank
  • Israel later put its annexation plans on hold

RAMALLAH: Israel has released more than $1 billion in funds withheld from the Palestinian Authority, a Palestinian minister said Wednesday, weeks after coordination was renewed between the two sides.
“The Israeli government transfers all financial dues of the clearance to the account of the Palestinian Authority, amounting to three billion and 768 million shekels,” civil affairs minister Hussein Al-Sheikh wrote on Twitter, referring to taxes, including customs taxes, that the Jewish state collects on behalf of the PA.

In May, the Palestinians stopped coordination with Israel, with PA leader Mahmud Abbas saying it was in response to Israeli plans to annex parts of the West Bank.
Israel later put its annexation plans on hold, in return for an agreement to normalize ties with the United Arab Emirates, announced in August.
In halting the cooperation with Israel, the PA also stopped accepting transfer of taxes — particularly customs duties — collected by Israel on its behalf.
Earlier in the week, an Israeli official told AFP on condition of anonymity that the “security cabinet approved transferring the money to the PA,” without specifying the amount.
Palestinian prime minister Mohammed Shtayyeh said on Monday the Palestinians were “entitled” to the funds, expected to relieve pressure on a Palestinian economy in the grips of a severe budgetary crisis.
Officials “will take everything they are owed. They have been patient for months and it’s only a matter of a little more time to make everything clear,” Shtayyeh said.
Deprived of this income, the PA had to cut the salaries of its civil servants, at a time when the Palestinian economy had begun grappling with the impact of the novel coronavirus pandemic.


Egypt’s security services bust Muslim Brotherhood network in capital

A house in Downtown Cairo was being used as a center for Muslim Brotherhood activity, under the cover of SITA Studies Company. (Shutterstock/File Photo)
A house in Downtown Cairo was being used as a center for Muslim Brotherhood activity, under the cover of SITA Studies Company. (Shutterstock/File Photo)
Updated 23 January 2021

Egypt’s security services bust Muslim Brotherhood network in capital

A house in Downtown Cairo was being used as a center for Muslim Brotherhood activity, under the cover of SITA Studies Company. (Shutterstock/File Photo)
  • National Security Sector monitored an apartment in the Bab Al-Luq area that was being used by a Muslim Brotherhood group
  • The network was led by a Turkish man

CAIRO: Egypt’s security services have announced the capture of a Muslim Brotherhood network in downtown Cairo.

The network was led by a Turkish man and prepared negative reports that contained “false and fabricated information about the political, economic, security and human rights situations in Egypt,” according to security forces. 

The information was aimed at tarnishing the country’s image inside and outside the country, with the reports sent to the group’s handlers in Turkey.

An official statement said the National Security Sector monitored an apartment in the Bab Al-Luq area that was being used by a Muslim Brotherhood group to prepare negative reports with Turkey’s support. The house was being used as a center for their activity, under the cover of SITA Studies Company.

The premises were raided and Helmy Moamen Mustafa Bilji, the Turkish financial director of the group, and three other members were arrested. Legal steps are being taken against them.