Palestinians to keep paying prisoner stipend despite…

Israelis take part in a rally near the Gaza border calling for the return of the bodies of IDF soldiers being held by Hamas

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said his government will continue paying stipends to Palestinians jailed or killed by Israelis, and to their families.

At least 136 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli troops during mass demonstrations along the Gaza border since March 30 and the Gazans sending the kites over the fence believe they have found an effective new weapon.

The team of officials, led by presidential advisor/son-in-law Jared Kushner, travelled to the region last month but found their proposals unlikely to be implemented because the Palestinian Authority refuses to meet with them, still infuriated by the Trump administration's decisions to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and move its embassy there.

Abbas told a Fatah Central Committee meeting in the West Bank that the Palestinian government would continue to pay its "martyrs and prisoners and wounded people", as it has since 1965, the Times of Israel reported. Critics point out that the PA security agencies exist exclusively to protect Israel and Israeli interests, not the people of Palestine.

On July 2 the Israeli parliament voted 120-87 to withhold approximately US$330 million in annual tax revenues - the amount that would typically go toward this stipend during the 2018 fiscal year.

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Early this morning Israeli authorities banned Swedish human rights activist Ladraa from entering Palestine.

"The money we pay to families of prisoners and martyrs, which Israel opposes, we will not allow anyone to intervene with it", Abbas said, according to the official Wafa News Agency.

"We are still waiting and we will take the proper measures that fit with our interests", Abbas said. Some 6,500 Palestinians are now being held in Israeli jails, many of whom are minors. Many of them were convicted of attacks or planning attacks against Israelis.

Around 35,000 families receive support from the fund.

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