NEW YORK (JTA) – Israel has suspended $100 million in tax payments to the Palestinian Authority.
Israeli officials had threatened to cut off payments entirely if Palestine was admitted into UNESCO, the United Nations’ cultural agency. Palestine was recognized as a state at UNESCO earlier this week over opposition from U.S. and Israel.
Palestinian officials announced Thursday that Israel had not transferred tax revenue for November. The funds are collected from customs, border and some income taxes and are usually transferred within the first three days of the month.
Israel has yet to announce a public position on the tax payments, but an official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that a “temporary hold" has been put in place “pending a final decision," The Associated Press reported.
According to Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, the PA uses that money to pay their employees and has had to borrow from local banks to make up for the loss of funds.