Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Breaking News

John Kerry Warns About ‘Viability’ of Palestinian Authority If Israel Withholds Tax Money

Secretary of State John Kerry on Saturday expressed concern about the viability of the Palestinian Authority if it does not soon receive tax revenue which has been withheld by Israel.

The funds have been held back from the Authority since last month in retaliation for Palestinian moves to join the International Criminal Court (ICC).

The move would pave the way for the ICC to take jurisdiction over alleged crimes committed in Palestinian lands and to investigate the conduct of Israeli and Palestinian leaders.

While the United States opposed steps by the Palestinians to join the ICC, it has raised concerns with the Israelis about its decision to freeze the transfer of more than $100 million in tax revenue, warning it could further raise tensions.

The tax revenue is critical to running the Authority, which exercises limited self-rule, and for paying public sector salaries. Israel took a similar step in December 2012, freezing revenue transfers for three months in response to the Palestinians’ launch of a campaign for recognition of statehood at the United Nations.

The issue of funding for the aid-dependent Palestinians was raised in talks between Kerry and British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond in London. Kerry warned of another crisis in the region if the Palestinians did not receive funding.

“If the Palestinian Authority ceases, or were to cease security cooperation, or even decide to disband as a result of their economic predicament, and that could happen in the future if they don’t receive additional revenues, then we would be faced by yet another crisis,” Kerry told a news conference.

“We are working hard to prevent that from happening and that is why we have been reaching out to key stakeholders to express these concerns and also to try to work together to find a solution to this challenge,” he said, without elaborating.

The World Bank warned last year that war in Gaza would contribute to a reversal of seven years of growth in the Palestinian economy.

Engage

  • Events

    Haart to Haart

    Virtual

    Dec 7, 2022

    7 pm ET · 

    A conversation with Julia Haart and her son Shlomo, stars of Netflix's 'My Unorthodox Life,' about the new season and much more.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.