The United Arab Emirates said on Friday, November 23 it had met its commitments to two funds set up to help the Palestinians by an October 2000 Arab summit in Cairo.
"The United Arab Emirates has paid its full share of $150 million to the Intifada and al-Aqsa funds," said a foreign ministry spokesman, quoted by the official WAM news agency. According to the spokesman, "$135 million were paid into the two funds and $15 million were handed to the Palestinian Authority (PA) at its request."
The Jerusalem Intifada Fund was created to support the families of Palestinians killed or wounded during the uprising against Israel that began in September 2000, and the Al-Aqsa Fund to "preserve the Islamic character of East Jerusalem" and support the Palestinian economy.
Both funds were entrusted to the Jeddah-based Islamic Development Bank (IDB) after some donors balked at transferring the money directly to the PA, citing a lack of transparency in its management of public funds.
The IDB on November 11 listed the UAE as one of nine donor countries to have made the payments they pledged to the two funds, saying Abu Dhabi had donated $150 million. Three other Arab countries have paid part of the sums they pledged, it said. The bank said donations into the two funds reached $680.5 million up to November 10, amounting to 98.2 percent of the sums pledged by 12 Arab states.
Arab states pledged a total of one billion dollars to the two funds during their October 2000 summit, but the sums committed so far have reached $693 million, IDB said. — (AFP, Abu Dhabi)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )