The Main Goal of the Palestinian Government (GateStone Institute) by Khaled Abu Toameh 05/16/12)
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The Palestinian government is in fact lying when it talks about a
financial crisis; its main goal is to get Western and Arab donors to
channel more funds to Ramallah. "Corruption in the Palestinian
Authority is more widespread than in the past." — Hasan Khreishah,
Deputy Seaker, Palestinian Parliament.
At a time when many Western governments, the World Bank and various
international organizations are continuing to heap praise on the
Palestinian Authority for implementing reforms, the deputy speaker of
the Palestinian parliament, Hasan Khreishah, announced that financial
and administrative corruption was now more widespread than ever.
Khreishah, who is an independent parliamentarian, made it clear that
the Palestinian government of Salam Fayyad, which has been hailed for
combating corruption and implementing major reforms, was continuing
to squander public funds.
One of the charges the deputy parliament speaker makes is related to
the Palestinian government´s claim that it is facing severe financial
Khreishah says that the Palestinian government is in fact lying when
it talks about a financial crisis; its main goal is to get Western
and Arab donors to channel more funds to Ramallah: "Corruption in the
Palestinian Authority is more widespread than in the past," he
said. "We hear about the suffering and hunger of the poor and the
difficulties facing the unemployed, farmers, villagers and civil
servants," Khreishah said. "At the same time, we hear about the
luxurious life of senior and influential officials and the
involvement of some in money laundering."
What Khreishah is saying is that Western donors, specifically the US
and EU, are continuing to pour billions of dollars on the Palestinian
Authority without holding its leaders fully accountable.
He revealed, for example, that the chairman of the Palestine
Investment Fund, a company that was established by the PLO, was
receiving a salary of $35,000 a month, or $420,000 a year, while the
average salary of a civil servant in the Palestinian Authority ranges
from $500 to $1,000 a month.
Khreishah also disclosed that senior members of the PLO and Fatah
have not only awarded themselves huge salaries, but also- luxurious
vehicles, as well as various privileges.
A senior Palestinian official, he said, spends an average of five
days abroad together with aides, advisors and secretaries -- all at
the expense of the Palestinians.
"Since the signing of the Oslo Accords, we have had 228 ministers, in
addition to advisers," Khreishah said in an interview with the London-
based Al- Quds Al-Arabi newspaper."All receive high salaries and
luxurious vehicles," he continued. "In light of the financial
expenses [of the PA leadership], the talk about a financial crisis is
repugnant and baseless," he charged. "This talk has become a sort of
Khreishah also lashed out at the two Palestinian governments in the
West Bank and Gaza Strip for violations of human rights and freedom
of expression. Journalists have become a target for anyone who wants
to violate human rights," Khreishah added. "Palestinians are being
held hostages by the two parties."
Despite his senior status in the Palestinian Authority, including the
fact that he is an elected parliament member, the international media
chose to ignore his statements. Instead, some journalists rushed to
seek denials from Palestinian government officials, who tried to
discredit the whistle-blower by claiming that he was a Hamas
supporter -- a charge that sounds ridiculous, especially to all those
who have known Khreishah for many years.
The Palestinian government -- with the help of mainstream media in
the West -- does not want such statements to appear in the
international media lest they affect financial aid to the
Palestinians. The next time the Palestinian government complains
about a financial crisis, it would be advisable for Western donors to
translate Khreishah´s statements into English and read them before
channeling additional funds to the Palestinian government´s coffers..
….Unless the Western donors enjoy being deceived and stripped of
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