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The Palestinian Authority under pressure

July 16th, 2012
04:54 PM ET

By Lucky Gold

We have been facing serious financial difficulties for more than two years

CNN – Can the stalled peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority be revived by the visit of U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to the region?

On Monday, Christiane Amanpour sat down with Salam Fayyad, the Palestinian Prime Minister, in his Ramallah office on the West Bank, where he expressed serious doubts – not only about the peace talks but about the very existence of the Palestinian Authority he represents:

“It should not be taken as a foregone conclusion that we’re going to be able to make it, to be honest with you, given the pressures on us, both political as well as economic and financial.”

Asked to elaborate on those financial pressures, he told her, “We have been facing serious financial difficulties for more than two years now and the crisis has become very acute to the point of us being unable to meet such basic obligations as wages.”

When asked how many people are not getting paid, Prime Minister Fayyad replied, “About one hundred fifty five thousand people.”

The fault, he said, lies with delinquent financial donors in the region: “Yesterday, I got a call from Saudi finance minister who informed me that the kingdom is about to transfer a hundred million dollars. We’re grateful to Saudi Arabia for that, but not all Arab countries, donor countries, are in full compliance.”

Is the government of Israel prepared to accept a solution

Non-compliance, he said, could be another casualty of the failed peace process: “A lot of people have begun to view what we have been doing… as an exercise of adapting to prolong occupation.”

When asked if he believes Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu intends to end the occupation, he was emphatic: “What I really believe is very important is for the Israeli body politic, the Israeli government and the Israeli Prime Minister to once and for all answer a very simple question: Is the government of Israel prepared to accept a solution to this long standing conflict: a fully sovereign state of Palestine on the territory occupied in 1967, yes or no?”

There is no alternative to exhumation of the body

Lastly, he was asked if he believes the late President of the Palestinian Authority, Yasser Arafat, was poisoned by the Israelis and does he support the exhumation of the body?

“I think there is no alternative to exhumation of the body,” said Prime Minister Fayyad, “given evidence recently reported on a Swiss lab finding there are traces of plutonium on personal belongings to the dead president. Under these conditions I personally believe that this must be done.”

soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. miriam

    The Palestinians receive more aid per capita than any other people on the planet. If the money isn't going to the people it must be being usurped by the leaders. If the Palestinians believe they are ready for statehood, they need to learn to survive without hand-outs from the UN, EU and regional donors which don't seem to end up where they are needed.

    The Israeli government has agreed to negotiate a solution to the conflict with the Palestinians including borders, settlements and other issues. The Palestinians are refusing to sit down with the Israelis until the Israelis agree to all the Palestinian preconditions which are precisely the issues to be negotiated.

    As defined by International Law, there is no "occupation" and it is time that such false rhetoric should be removed from the dialogue. People may not like the idea that Israel won a defensive battle, legally acquiring territory that happens to be part of its religious, historical and cultural heitage and also home to Arabs, but that makes the land disputed, not occupied.

    July 17, 2012 at 3:54 am | Reply
    • Waleed

      Total direct U.S. aid to Israel amounts to well over $140 billion in 2003 dollars. Israel receives about $3 billion in direct foreign assistance each year, which is roughly one-fifth of America's entire foreign aid budget. In per capita terms, the United States gives each Israeli a direct subsidy worth about $500 per year. This largesse is especially striking when one realizes that Israel is now a wealthy industrial state with a per capita income roughly equal to South Korea or Spain.”
      The case of this conflict like a boxing round between 20 KG kids and Mohamed Ali Klay.... no power , no balance, no commitment, no grantee from Israel... we have to change strategy, dissolve the PLO, stop direct negotiation with the Israeli government, but instead creating a civil society contain both sides who want to live together in peace .; and put the struggle into the street in PA and Isreal, if really the people in Isreal want to live in peace they have to help Palestinian to live in peace tooooooooooooooooooooooooo

      July 17, 2012 at 6:42 am | Reply
      • miriam

        US aid to Israel is only military aid, not economic, and 80% of it is paid straight back into the US economy, creating jobs for US citizens and strengthening US R&D, security and intelligence.

        The US continues to give the aid because it considers it is in its own interests as stated above and also so it can severely restrict Israeli defence deals with other countries which would most likely bring into Israel more than the amount it receives from the US.

        July 17, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
  2. Thinker23

    A sovereign independent state was offered to Palestinian Arabs in 1948, 1967, 1978, 2000, 2001, 2005, 2009 and they've rejected it every single time. During the last couple of years Palestinian leaders are running around begging others to "recognize" a Palestinian state while refusing to recognize themsxelves. Palestinians DO NOT WANT a state. If they did they would have it 64 years ago.

    July 17, 2012 at 6:18 am | Reply
    • Waleed

      I do think that you dont read the history at all... I would love if you will live one month as Palestinian in Gaza and lets talk after that.... no Isreali government since 1948 never offered such thing, even the peace treaty with Sadat we call it in political science( the Six No treaty) Israel has the power because the Arabs regimes around are so cheep and dont give attention to the Palestinians ..... the strength of Israel because of the weakness of the Arabs... and that will change.. we need balance and peace... no more interventions, no more war, peace (by any mean)

      July 17, 2012 at 6:47 am | Reply
      • miriam

        If we were living in Gaza, our children would be forced to go to Hamas-run summer camps where they learn to walk on nails and knife-blades, simulate ( fabricated ) torture in Israeli jails and are taught to die proudly as shahids, killing as many Jews as possible.
        We would watch TV full of kids and their puppets boosting about how many Israelis they want to kill when they are old enough.
        If we happened to be Christian, we would be subjected to forced conversion.

        The Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty had nothing to do with the Palestinians. They were referred to in the Camp David Accords the previous year.

        July 17, 2012 at 12:15 pm |
  3. Waleed

    "Tony Blair, the Middle East Quartet envoy and former British prime minister, talks about efforts to advance the Palestinian peace process". Such a shame to choose such personality to be the peace envoy ))) its a jock , his place to be in front of the Hague (ICC)... havent he lies and manipulated the public in UK and the west with the ally of the US to invade Iraq ..killing around 1 million with direct and indirect violence and displacing 7 millions ... in disable the region until today ? who create peace by Gun and killing.. what is Hippocratic way of Media manipulation.... WE NEED CLEAN MEDIA , to show the reality of the planet we live.. all secret plans to control Humans more and more, more secret plans to create Wars here and there .. reshaping the Middle-east .. reshaping Africa ... reshaping Latin America... ENOUGH we need peace .. Blair has put his name beside G.w Bush name in the history rubbish... he have to say sorry for he has committed against civilians and his own soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan .. stop war and u will see .....

    July 17, 2012 at 6:54 am | Reply
    • they are blinded from da truth

      LIsten the name Israel is tied in bible , in the torah.. so u trying to say PAlestians are dieing because the whole world is curropted by lies and propaganda is not going to go through some ones small minded head like miram she is a waste of timee... she is find wat she believes the truth... wat they want to believe or wat there fathers are tellling them and their churches... when they dont understand that PALestians are more tied to the israelits by blood more than fake israel today...

      August 5, 2012 at 3:49 am | Reply
  4. Dogara

    If there is not political and economic backbone to continue this useless war as Fayyad said, why not use it as an alternative to give PEACE and DILOGUE a chance. so that for onces the region will know and feel PEACE.

    July 17, 2012 at 7:35 am | Reply
  5. israeli

    notice how amanpoure blames the failure of negotiations on israel. typical of western journalists.

    July 17, 2012 at 11:40 am | Reply
  6. Jossef

    When the Palestinians want simpathetic coverage, they can always turn to Amanpour. The rich Arab Gulf countries have not delivered their promised funds to the PA because (as they said privately) some the funds get stolen by Palestinian officials. Per capita, the Palestinians get more donations than any other group in the world, all of it because of the threat of another Intifada and to give them an incentive to pursue the peace process. It is time to stop bribing the Palestinians and for them to understand that peace is in their best interest not a way to squize funding from the EU and the Gulf States.

    July 17, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Reply
  7. they are blinded from da truth

    ISrael every time it offers peace, its killing a famillyy or posioning them or beating them... EVERY TIME.. even in war there are rules. BUT in ISrael its killing the whole family and one to suffer for their loved ones...IN ISrael its shut off the water to the palestinians. its cutt off the roads so they wont make money.... make life harder for the palestinian so they would suffer.. A life in for a PAlestinian.. is to hear how a brother died just for walking to a mosque.. there is no money every time some sends money the person is putt in jail... for supporting a palestian..Israel is a death trap for the world.. starting with the palestiians... ISrael funds ppl to live in palestians homes for free... just aid to military yah right... they are bulldozering palestians home to give to israel taking advantage of syria crisis to make more property for themselves

    August 5, 2012 at 4:05 am | Reply
  8. they are blinded from da truth

    Palestians are not allowed nothing no weapons.,, school is hard to go to , work.. i mean ppl if u have just a lil heart.. u would know regardless if they arab , muslims. that they are still human beings.. and have more culture than the bar hoppers wannabeess ,, who envy the indigeous ppl living there.

    August 5, 2012 at 4:08 am | Reply

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