The Palestinian foreign minister said Sunday. That Israel had revoked his travel permit, part of punitive measures against Palestinians. That Israel’s new hard-line government announced days ago.
Israel’s new hard-line government
Riyad Maliki said in a statement that. He was returning from a presidential inauguration in Brazil. When he was informed that Israel had revoked. A travel permit for top Palestinian officials. That allowed them, unlike ordinary Palestinians, to travel in and out of the occupied West Bank.
Israel’s government on Friday approved measures to punish. Palestinians in retaliation for pressuring the UN’s highest court to give an opinion on Israel’s occupation.
The decision underscores the tough stance the current government is taking on the Palestinians days into its term. It comes at a time when violence in the occupied West Bank has escalated and peace talks are a distant memory.
Brazilian president’s inauguration
In East Jerusalem, a flashpoint of Israeli-Palestinian tensions. Israeli police said they broke up a meeting of Palestinian parents. About their children’s education, claiming it was funded by the Palestinian Authority. Police said the operation came at the behest of National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gavir. An ultra-nationalist with a long record of anti-Arab speeches. And stunts who now oversees the police.
The Palestinians condemned the withdrawal of Maliki’s permit. Israeli officials could not immediately be reached for confirmation.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet meeting on Sunday. That the moves were aimed at what he called “an extreme anti-Israel” move at the United Nations.
On Friday, the government’s security cabinet decided. That Israel would withhold $39 million from the Palestinian Authority. And transfer the funds to a compensation program for the families of Israeli victims of Palestinian militant attacks.
It also said Israel would deduct more revenue it usually transfers to the cash-strapped PA. The same amount the authority paid last year to the families of Palestinian prisoners. And those killed in the conflict, including militants involved in attacks against Israelis.
The Palestinian leadership describes the payments as a necessary social good. While Israel says the so-called martyrs fund encourages violence. Israel’s withheld funds threaten to exacerbate the PA’s financial woes.
The security cabinet took direct aim at Palestinian officials. It would deny privileges to “VIPs who are leading a political and legal battle against Israel.”
The cabinet took a decision on security on Friday
The police operation took place on Saturday, days after Ben-Giv took over. Police alleged that the parents’ meeting was funded by the Palestinian Authority. And attended by PA activists, which it said violated Israeli law. Police said they prevented the meeting from taking place. And that they were acting under an order from Ben-Zvir to shut it down. Police declined to provide evidence to support their claims. And a spokesman for Ben-Gavir referred questions to police.
Ziad Shamali, head of the Jerusalem Students’ Parents Committee Union. Which was organizing the meeting, denied any PA involvement. It was held to discuss teacher shortages at schools in East Jerusalem. He said he saw claims of a PA relationship as a “political excuse to ban”.
The Palestinian Authority was created to govern Gaza and parts of the occupied West Bank. Israel opposes any official business conducted by the PA in East Jerusalem. And police have broken up incidents it has accused of being linked to the PA in the past.
Israel captured East Jerusalem in the 1967 Middle East War. And later annexed it, a move not recognized by most of the international community. Israel considers the city its undivided, eternal capital. The Palestinians want the eastern part of the city as the capital of their desired state.
About a third of the city’s population is Palestinian. And they have long faced neglect and discrimination. At the hands of the Israeli authorities, including in education, housing and public services.