Wed 22 May 2024 11:49 am - Jerusalem Time

Smotrich demands that Netanyahu expand settlements and seize Palestinian clearing funds

On Wednesday morning, Israeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich called on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to take immediate punitive measures against the Palestinian Authority in response to the decisions of Norway, Spain and Ireland to recognize the State of Palestine.

Smotrich's requests were as follows:

1. An immediate meeting of the Settlement Planning Council was held in Judea and Samaria (West Bank) to approve ten thousand housing units (settlement) in the settlements to be ready for professional development, including Area E1.

2. Demanding the approval of a decision in the cabinet session, tomorrow, Thursday, to establish a settlement in exchange for every country that recognizes the Palestinian state. According to the decisions of Spain, Norway, and Ireland, they intend to announce today the unilateral recognition of the Palestinian state. Accordingly, I would like to inform you that I have directed the Settlement Directorate to prepare a strategic plan for planning three settlements, and I demand the approval of this decision.

3. Tomorrow, Thursday, another decision will be presented to the cabinet, which aims to cancel the “Norwegian path” that the cabinet approved a few months ago, and “Norway was the first to recognize the Palestinian state unilaterally today,” and it cannot “be a partner in anything related to Judea.” And Samaria (West Bank), and I intend to stop transferring money to it and demand the return of all transferred funds.”

4. Permanently cancel all VIP passes from Palestinian Authority officials at all crossings (checkpoints) and impose additional financial penalties on senior Palestinian Authority officials and their families.

5. I do not intend to transfer clearing funds to the Palestinian Authority until further notice, nor do I intend to extend compensation to the banks (Israeli that have transactions with Palestinian banks), at the end of next month.


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Smotrich demands that Netanyahu expand settlements and seize Palestinian clearing funds