• Hi Guest: Welcome to TRIBE, the online home of TRIBE MAGAZINE. If you'd like to post here, or reply to existing posts on TRIBE, you first have to register. Join us!

Aid to Palestinians

Ditto Much

TRIBE Member
EU suspends aid to Palestinians
The European Commission has temporarily halted direct aid payments to the Palestinian government, which is now led by militant group Hamas.

European Union foreign ministers are due to meet next week to discuss what to do about future aid.

The EU is the largest donor to the Palestinian Authority, which is reliant on foreign aid.

The EU has been threatening to cut off direct payments unless Hamas renounces violence and recognises Israel.

A spokesman for the Hamas government said the decision to suspend aid was a form of "blackmail" that would harm the Palestinian people.

A European Commission spokeswoman, Emma Udwin, told reporters in Brussels that Hamas had not yet met the international community's conditions, which include a call for Hamas to accept past peace agreements with Israel.

She said the Commission was adopting "a policy of maximum prudence" so as not to pre-judge the European ministers' discussions in Luxembourg on Monday.

However, the BBC's diplomatic correspondent Jonathan Marcus says the Commission's decision represents a clear warning to Hamas of the consequences of its failure to abide by international demands.

Cash-strapped government

Hamas, which took office last week under Prime Minister Ismail Haniya, has already said it would turn to the Islamic world to make up any shortfall in funding from the West.

The Palestinian Authority (PA) has received about $600m (500m euros; £340m) a year in aid from the EU since its foundation in 1994, with another $400m coming from the US.

Ms Udwin said some $36.9m (30m euros; £21m) in aid from the European Commission was at stake in the immediate future.

The freeze covers all direct aid to the government and payment of public employees' salaries with EU funds through the World Bank.

It does not affect humanitarian aid sent to non-governmental organisations or to United Nations relief agencies.

Money from individual member states is not affected either.

The PA is facing a financial crisis. Mr Haniya said earlier this week that his government had inherited a finance ministry that had no money left, yet had mounting debts.

The European Commission released $143m (118m euros; £83m) in direct and indirect aid in February, before Hamas took office.

It has also redirected some aid to pay Palestinian electricity bills directly to suppliers, including the Israeli electricity company, without going through the government.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4887226.stm








US suspends aid to Palestinians
The United States says it will suspend direct aid to the Palestinian government now led by Hamas.

But the US will boost humanitarian aid to Palestinians through UN aid agencies, a spokesman said.

The US statement came the same day the European Union announced it was suspending direct aid payments to the Palestinian government.

The US and the EU want Hamas to recognise Israel, renounce violence and accept past peace agreements.

State Department spokesman Sean McCormack, reading a statement from Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, said the US was "suspending assistance to the Palestinian government, cabinet and ministries".

The decision came because "the new Hamas-led Palestinian government failed to accept the Quartet principles of non-violence, recognition of Israel and respect of previous agreements between the parties", he said.

Mr McCormack said the suspension would be lifted if the Palestinian government met the Quartet's terms. The Quartet comprises the United Nations, the US, the EU and Russia.

But humanitarian aid to the Palestinians via agencies not linked to the government would go up by 57% this year to $245m (£140.5m), he said, and another $42m would go to supporting civil society and independent institutions.

"The desire is to help provide for the basic humanitarian needs of the Palestinian people," he said.

'Deep crisis'

On Wednesday, Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniya told the first meeting of his Hamas-led cabinet that the government faced a deep financial crisis.

He said his administration had inherited a finance ministry that had no money left, yet had mounting debts.

The US and the EU, the major donors to the Palestinians, have been reviewing their aid policy since Hamas won the general elections in January.

Between them, they contributed about $1bn (£574m) to the Palestinian Authority in 2005.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4889668.stm
 
Cannabis Seed Wedding Bands

SellyCat

TRIBE Member
Seems pretty straight forward..."adopt the policies we want you to adopt, or we'll take away your ability to govern." Unfortunately they are playing with the lives and wellbeing of an entire population of already ass-fucked people.
 

Ditto Much

TRIBE Member
Tel Aviv suicide blast kills six
A Palestinian suicide bombing has left at least six people dead and around 30 injured in the Israeli city of Tel Aviv, Israeli media report.

The bomb went off at a falafel restaurant on a busy street near a bus station in the Neve Shaanan area.

Two Palestinian groups say they carried out the attack - the first since the Hamas-led government was sworn in.

Hamas, which has been keeping a truce with Israel, said the attack was an act of "self-defence".

But Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas condemned it, saying it ran counter to Palestinian interests.

A bomb injured 15 people near the same falafel stall, The Mayor's Falafel, in January.

'I started to scream'

Israel has been marking Passover and its new parliament opens on Monday.

It was lunch-time when the bomb went off and the neighbourhood was crowded.

Of the injured, 15 are in a serious condition, Israel TV's Channel 2 said.

Some had to be treated on the pavement.

A witness, Moussa al Zidat, said the guard at the falafel restaurant had asked the apparent bomber to open his bag:

"I saw a young man starting to open his bag. The guard begins opening the bag, and then I heard a boom."

The bomber was among the six people killed, police told Israel's Army Radio.

Another witness, 62-year-old Sonya Levy, said she had just finished shopping when the blast went off 50 metres (yards) from her car.

"I was about to get into my car, and boom, there was an explosion," she recalled.

"A bit of human flesh landed on my car and I started to scream."

'Self-defence'

A member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades told Reuters news agency the attack was to avenge "Israeli massacres" in the Gaza Strip.

The Islamic Jihad group made its own claim of responsibility.

Sami Abu Zuhri, the official spokesman for Hamas, said the attack was "a natural result of the continued Israeli crimes" against Palestinians.

"Our people are in a state of self-defence and they have every right to use all means to defend themselves," he added.

Hamas has been on an undeclared cease-fire with Israel for more than a year.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/middle_east/4915868.stm
 

Big Harv

TRIBE Member
Olmert has said that the government will explore ways to continue providing aid to the Palestinian people without going through Hamas (i.e. though NGOs that operate in the territories). I think this would be the best route for the EU/US as well, so that the situation in the territories does not slip into complete and utter chaos. Obviously, Israel is not going to give money directly to an organization that doesn't recognize its existence that has sent legions of suicide bombers to kill innocent civilians in public places.
 

docta seuss

TRIBE Member
SellyCat said:
Seems pretty straight forward..."adopt the policies we want you to adopt, or we'll take away your ability to govern." Unfortunately they are playing with the lives and wellbeing of an entire population of already ass-fucked people.
i agree, but really, and this is certainly not any sort of justification, are the EU and US asking too much?
 
tribe cannabis accessories silver grinders

praktik

TRIBE Member
Well one thing that goes unexplored in most writings about Hamas' refusal to "recognize Israel" the question is WHAT Israel?

The Israel of 1967? The Israel of today with its separation fence and settlements?

That changes things: Hamas leadership has indicated in more than one forum and on more than one occasion that pre-1967 Israel would be acceptable to them - but if they're forced to "recognize" formally the Israel of today, they would be essentially saying they're cool with all the settlements and encroachments of Israel upon the West Bank, Gaza and Jerusalem.

The "recognition" of israel question is not as cut and dry as it may seem.
 

SellyCat

TRIBE Member
praktik said:
Well one thing that goes unexplored in most writings about Hamas' refusal to "recognize Israel" the question is WHAT Israel?

The Israel of 1967? The Israel of today with its separation fence and settlements?

That changes things: Hamas leadership has indicated in more than one forum and on more than one occasion that pre-1967 Israel would be acceptable to them - but if they're forced to "recognize" formally the Israel of today, they would be essentially saying they're cool with all the settlements and encroachments of Israel upon the West Bank, Gaza and Jerusalem.

The "recognition" of israel question is not as cut and dry as it may seem.

This is a really good point.

The concern is that they accept the so-called Two State Solution...i.e. that they accept the existance, in principle, of Israel as a Jewish state. Saying "under certain circumstances" is perfectly acceptable...under certain circumstances. I think the 1967 borders are a good starting point, but can be negotiated. I wish they had just built the fence on the green line; it would have been impossible to criticise.
 
Top