Saudis giving $100 million to Palestinian Authority


(JTA) – Saudi Arabia will give the Palestinian Authority $100 million in aid.

The donation announced Sunday by the PA prime minister’s office comes a week after PA President Mahmoud Abbas asked Saudi King Abdullah for financial assistance at a meeting two days earlier in Jedda. The money reportedly will help to pay the salaries of PA employees in advance of the Ramadan holiday.

"This $100 million is important and significant because it’s coming from a leading Arab state, and this hopefully can be an example for other countries to follow," Ghassan Khatib, a Saudi government spokesman, told Reuters.

Abbas and Abdullah at their meeting discussed "the financial crisis of the Palestinian Authority, which will no longer be able to pay its employees as Ramadan approaches," according to Jamal Shobaki, the Palestinians’ top diplomat in Riyadh, the French news agency AFP reported.

Saudi Arabia gave the PA $200 million last fall, Reuters reported.

The Palestinians’ debts have climbed to $1.5 billion, Shobaki told AFP.

Palestinian Labor Minister Ahmed Majdalani said earlier this month that donor countries were not honoring their pledges.



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