Friday, February 24, 2006

Business as usual with the Palestinian Authority for the EU and the UN

When is a terrorist group not a terrorist group? When they're focused on killing Israelis seems to be the answer for the UN and EU.

Hamas my be a terrorist group according to the EU and the US, but only the US is prepared to act on it by ceasing to fund the Palestinian Authority.

The EU is set to give the Palestinians a fresh cash injection in spite of the Palestinians’ failure to meet any conditions for a resumption in / Middle East & Africa / Arab-Israel conflict - EU set to give cash lifeline to Palestinian authority

As reported here earlier, Sweden, Britain and France are more than happy to continue business as usual with the Hamas government, and will now be joined by the other EU member states.

The new funding, which could be around $119M (€100m or £68m) would supoposedly include money for “basic needs”, such as maintaining electricity services as well as money given directly to the Palastinian Authority.

At least we won't have to listen to any more pious blather from the EU about how it doesn't fund Palestinian terrorism.

The UN is also in the game, with the U.N.'s special envoy to the Middle East, Alvaro de Soto, lobbying donors to provide funds to `keep the Palestinian Authority running.'

"We are advocating that the (Palestinian Authority) institutions should not be starved of funds to the point where they collapse."

As we also have seen, US Secretary of State Condi Rice was also unsuccessful in getting our `allies' the Saudis to stop funding Hamas.

During a visit to the region this week, urged Arab countries to deny aid to a Palestinian government led by Hamas if it refused to recognise Israel and meet other international demands.

Saudi Arabia and Egypt rejected U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's appeals, and Iran also said it would help fund the new government.

Interestingly enough, only the Saudis insisted on some real accountability from Hamas..something the UN and the EU has never done.

They were required to present a plan to the Saudi royal advisers for running the PA on a shoestring budget and eliminating graft. The Hamas plan called for the elimination of 37,000 totally fictitious jobs in the security services and government apparatus that could be cut without any firing of PA employees, for a saving of approximately $400 million a year. This would pare the PA’s annual budget from $1.2 billion to $800 million.

I wonder in who's pocket the `salaries' for those phony 37,000 jobs ended up?

Russia has also offered to provide assistance and even sell arms to the Palestinians, and has invited Hamas leaders to Moscow for talks expected to take place as early as March 3.

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