Brussels: Israel has prepared to provide aid to the Palestinian administration under Mahmoud Abbas in West Bank to relieve the hardships of the people. But, Israel has put a condition that the Abbas’s Fatah party should take control of the Gaza strip. Gaza strip is in the control of Hamas, a pro-Iran organisation that is staunchly anti-Israel. This proposal by Israel to the Palestine administration is expected to invoke reactions.
The US has decided to stop the financial aid to Palestine. The organisation ‘International Donor Group for Palestine’ has been formed to address the problems arising due to this. Two days ago, an emergency meeting of this organisation providing aid to Palestine was convened at Brussels. Officials from the European Union, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Jordan, Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia attended this meeting along with the US, Israel and Palestine.
On the occasion of the meeting, Israel presented a proposal in front of the ‘Palestine authority’, lead by Mahmood Abbas, running the government in the West Bank. In the proposal, Israel expressed willingness to create the infrastructure in the Gaza Strip for desalination process, electricity and natural gas storage for the Palestinian people. The total outlay for the proposal will be about USD 1 billion.
But, Israeli leader ‘Tzachi Hanegbi’ clarified that there is a condition for providing this aid that the Abbas administration will have to fulfil. The ‘Palestine Authority’ has to take control of the Gaza Strip like the West Bank, accept the responsibility of the Palestinian population in Gaza, was the demand put forward by Israel. Hardliner, anti-Israel Hamas is in control of the Gaza Strip since 2007. Hamas had evicted Abbas’s Fatah party from the Gaza Strip. Israel had objected to the functioning of Hamas in Gaza.
There are major differences between Hamas and Abbas’s Fatah organisation. Hamas is accusing Fatah of taking a very liberal stand about Israel. In spite of this, there are reports of Hamas and Fatah uniting to counter Israel. But, Israel has demanded that Abbas should not form a government with Hamas. The Israeli proposal for the Gaza Strip seems to have risen from the same point of view.
The US special envoy, ‘Jason Greenblat’ who was attending the meeting, appealed that ‘Palestinian government should also support the Jerusalem announcement and start peaceful negotiations’. But the Palestinian leaders dismissed this demand. The European Union too express displeasure about the US stand about Jerusalem. America should not take the initiative for the peace talks alone. There should also be participation from the others, was the expectation expressed by the European Union. Meanwhile, the European Union has announced a financial aid of 53 million dollars for the Gaza Strip, on the occasion of the meeting.