Israel

Qatar to Send $480m to West Bank, Gaza as Part of Ceasefire Agreement

Qatar has said it will send $480m to the Palestinian Authority (PA) and the Gaza Strip after an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire agreement ended the deadliest rocket fire on Israel since the 2014 Gaza war.

In a statement on Tuesday morning, Qatar’s Foreign Ministry announced that the country would allocate $300 million in grants and loans to support the PA’s budget for the health and education sectors. The other $180 million will fund United Nations programs and electricity services in the West Bank and Gaza.

Both Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh and PA President Mahmoud Abbas thanked the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, for the generous pledge. The decision, Haniyeh said, is a “continuation” of Qatar’s unwavering support of the Palestinian people.

Qatar has long been a major donor to the Palestinians. The new cash infusion will allow Gazans to continue to use electricity for 12 hours a day.

Earlier on Monday, Israel announced that it would allow the immediate transfer of $30 million in cash to the Gaza Strip under the terms of the Egyptian-brokered truce. On Sunday night, the government in Jerusalem agreed to the ceasefire after Palestinian terrorist groups had fired almost 700 rockets at southern Israel, killing four Israeli civilians.

Israel has demonstrated immense restraint and maximum flexibility to ease the suffering of Gaza’s civilian population in the face of ongoing rioting at the Gaza-Israeli border, indiscriminate rocket attacks, and the PA’s financial sponsorship of convicted Palestinian terrorists and their families.

During the recent bombardment of Israeli towns, Israel transferred 171,712 gallons of gasoline to Palestinians through the Kerem Shalom Crossing. On Nov. 8, (changed to comma) Israel allowed Qatar to deliver $15 million in cash to Gaza to pay the salaries of Palestinian civil servants.

The PA announced last month that it would cut in half the salaries of its law-abiding employees to avoid cutting salaries of Palestinian terrorists and their relatives under the so-called “pay-to-slay” scheme, which led the United States and Israel to cut aid until the PA stops inciting terror.

[Photo: Jim Mattis / Wikimedia Commons]