PA gives pay hikes to murderers in Israeli prisons

August 2, 2022 by Aryeh Savir - TPS
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The Palestinian Authority (PA) has recently doubled the monthly stipend of one terrorist imprisoned in Israel, and given a significant increase to four others, part of its controversial conduct of paying terrorists and their families.

Armed and masked members of the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, the armed wing of the Fatah movement, during a news conference in Gaza City, February 2022.                   Photo by Majdi Fathi/TPS

Four terrorists who carried out a series of bombings in Jerusalem 20 years ago recently received a 14.29% raise in their stipends.

The terror cell detonated a bomb in the Frank Sinatra cafeteria of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem that murdered nine people, including five American citizens, and injured over 80 others.

Four of the members of the terrorist cell, Wael Qassem, Wassim Abbasi, Alla Aldin Abbasi, and Muhammed Odeh, were arrested shortly after the attack. Having now spent 20 years in prison, the PA gave each of the terrorists a 14.29% raise in their basic salary, from NIS 7,000 ($2,251) to NIS 8,000 ($2,572) a month.

Since the terrorists were residents of Jerusalem, the PA pays them an additional supplement of NIS 300 ($96) every month.

To date, the PA has paid each of the four terrorists a sum of NIS 1,034,500 ($332,637).

Four other terrorists convicted for their part in the attack on the university and other attacks, including Muhammad Arman, Walid Anjas, Abdallah Barghouti, and Ibrahim Hamed also receive a monthly salary from the PA.

In total, the PA has paid these eight terrorists a cumulative sum of NIS 8,022,600 ($2,579,614).

Similarly, the terrorist Omar Al-Abd, who murdered in July 2017 Yosef Salomon and his two adult children, Chaya and Elad, during their Shabbat evening dinner in Halamish, had his salary doubled by the PA this month.

Having now completed five years in prison, the PA raised Al-Abd’s salary from NIS 2,000 ($643) per month to NIS 4,000 ($1,286) per month.

The PA has been paying monthly salaries to convicted terrorists imprisoned in Israel since its establishment. The payments are made to the terrorists after being imprisoned for their participation in terror activity.

According to the PA’s pay scale, the salary of an imprisoned terrorist begins at NIS 1,400 every month from his first day in prison, and gradually rises to NIS 12,000, in accordance with the amount of time he has been in prison. Therefore, the more severe the attack was, the higher the stipend the terrorist is set to receive.

The Palestinian Media Watch watchdog estimates that in 2021 the PA spent NIS 841 million ($270.75 m.) paying rewards to terrorists. NIS 598,796 million shekels ($193.16 m.) were paid to imprisoned terrorists and released terrorists, and at least another NIS 241 million ($77.59 m.) were paid to wounded terrorists and the families of dead terrorists.

Israel has warned that these payments are an incentive for terrorism.

The PA’s policy has been widely condemned, with Canada, the US, Australia, and Holland halting direct aid to the PA until the policy is abolished, but the PA has vowed to proceed with the policy it claims is a form of welfare.

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