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Israel withholds tax revenues from Palestinian Authority


Israel said Sunday it would withhold more than $100 million in tax revenue this month from the cash-strapped Palestinian Authority, the latest reaction to last week’s U.N. vote recognizing the Palestinian territories as a “nonmember observer state.”

Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz said he would use the money to repay part of an outstanding Palestinian debt—estimated to be about $180 million—to Israel’s electricity company for power supplied to parts of the West Bank. …

The Israeli move did not dampen the celebrations Sunday in Ramallah, where thousands of people gave a hero’s welcome to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas upon his return from New York. … “One day, a young Palestinian will raise the Palestinian flag over Jerusalem, the eternal capital of the state of Palestine,” Abbas told the jubilant crowds, echoing a phrase the Israeli leaders often use to describe Jerusalem. “Palestine has succeeded in something historic at the United Nations. The recognition of Palestine as a country changes everything. It highlights new realities.” …

(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com …