The United States is cutting its annual aid to the Palestinian Authority by $80 million, in support of Israel following the latest spate of violence in the occupied territories.
The US State Department “notified the lawmakers that it plans reduce economic aid for the West Bank and Gaza Strip from $370 million to $290 at the end of September,” Israeli media outlets reported Saturday.
The 22-percent cut for the 2015 fiscal year came after US Congress sent a letter to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, telling him that the US funds were contingent on tamping down “incitement.”
On Thursday, the US House of Representatives’ Foreign Affairs Committee unanimously called on Palestinians to “end incitement against Israel.”
“This wave of violence isn’t some random flare-up,” said Eliot Engel, the top Democrat on the committee. “It’s the product of years and years of anti-Israel propaganda and indoctrination — some of which has been actively promoted by Palestinian Authority officials and institutions.”
The latest wave of Israeli-Palestinian clashes began when Tel Aviv restricted the entry of some Palestinian worshipers into the al-Aqsa Mosque on August 26.