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Istayeh urges Norway to pressure Israel to release full tax revenues

April 24, 2019 9:45 A.M. (Updated: April 24, 2019 2:53 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Palestinian Prime Minister, Muhammad Ishtayeh, called on Norway to pressure Israel to release in full the Palestinian tax revenues, reiterating that the decision to deduct from the tax revenues is illegal and violates signed agreement, on Tuesday.

Ishtayeh held a meeting with Helda Haraldstad, Representative of Norway to the Palestinian Authority (PA), at the prime minister’s office in Ramallah City, in the central occupied West Bank, where they discussed the latest political developments and the donors' conference scheduled to be held next month in Brussels.

Ishtayeh stressed the need for the international community to take serious steps to curb Israel's violations against the Palestinian people and not only by issuing condemnation statements.

He also praised Norway’s position and its continued support for Palestine, saying that it comes from Norway's belief in the values of justice, peace, and equality, hoping for its continuation until the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.

In mid-February, Israel's security cabinet approved the deduction of $138 million from the tax revenues it collects on behalf of the PA under the Oslo agreement.

The deduction is deemed to be relative to the said amount that the PA allocates for stipends paid to Palestinian prisoners in Israeli custody, as well as the families of the prisoners.

It is noteworthy that Israel collects funds from imports into the West Bank and Gaza, in addition to other taxes, and forwards a large sum of it to the PA, after deduction of payments for water and electricity.

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