TEL AVIV – The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) reportedly formed a committee on Tuesday that will plan a “disengagement” from Israel, including replacing the Israeli shekel with another form of currency – possibly a Palestinian one.
At a three-hour meeting chaired by PA President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday, the PLO’s top leadership requested that the PA prepare “plans and projects for disengagement steps with the Israeli government at the political, administrative, economic and security levels.”
Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip mostly use the Israeli shekel, Jordanian dinar, and U.S. dollar, and have complained that their economy is too intertwined with Israel’s.
Last month the PLO’s Central Council voted to suspend recognition of Israel following President Donald Trump’s declaration of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. Recognition of the Jewish state, the PLO said, would be contingent on Israel’s recognition of “Palestine” and the cessation of all settlement building in the West Bank.
PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah reiterated the claim that “settlement expansion,” as well as Israel’s military control in certain areas of the West Bank, were the main issues preventing the existence of a strong Palestinian economy.
Hamdallah called on other countries to pressure Israel to remove all restrictions on Palestinian movement in those areas and to support Palestinian projects such as building an airport and a seaport in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
The PA further expressed “deep gratitude” to the EU for its commitment to give $52.4 million in aid money and slammed the U.S. for adding Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh to its list of terrorists, with the claim that it paves the way for the assassination of Palestinian leaders.
“This decision provides Israel with a cover to continue its crimes against our people and leaders,” said a statement released after the meeting in Ramallah.
The PA further accused the U.S. of hypocrisy for ignoring the “organized state terrorism that is being perpetrated and encouraged by the Israeli government.”