TEL AVIV – Islamic Jihad sources told Breitbart Jerusalem that the movement has been suspending payments to its activists for three months.
The pay freeze, from which both the military and the political wings suffer, came to pass despite Iran’s recent agreement to continue to support Islamic Jihad financially.
The sources said the Iranian money has yet to be transferred and the reason for the delay is unknown. Islamic Jihad’s headquarters in Beirut, which was supposed to channel the funds to the Gaza branch, said that its numerous queries remained unanswered.
For years, Iran channeled up to hundreds of millions of dollars per year to the organization, but recently, due to disagreements over the Syrian crisis and the insurgency in Yemen, support was suspended.
In August, Islamic Jihad resumed its ties with the Islamic Republic that were cut after the organization refused to condemn a Saudi-led Arab coalition’s attacks on Yemen’s Houthi rebels, who are also supported by Iran.
The deal was meant to open the door to further cash transfers, but these have yet to materialize.
Islamic Jihad’s leadership believes that the reason is Iran’s growing involvement in the Syrian, Yemeni, and Iraqi conflicts, combined with the only limited removal of sanctions following July’s nuclear deal, which have gravely burdened the country’s budget.
At the same time, some have expressed concern that Iran has decided to invest in the Islamic Jihad splinter group called Alsabareen, which adheres more closely to Tehran’s policies and rhetoric. That, in turn, has led critics in Gaza to claim that Alsabareen promotes Shi’a Islam and tries – under a geostrategic guise – to proselytize among the Strip’s predominantly Sunni population.