Islamic Development Bank (IDB) announced Monday, April 9, it will release $180 million in new aid for the Palestinian Authority (PA) over the next six months.
The IDB said the aid will be delivered in six monthly installments of $30 million from April from two IDB-managed Arab funds that were created at the Arab summit in Cairo six months ago to support the Palestinians.
IDB director Ahmad Mohammad Ali and Palestinian ambassador in Riyadh Hashem Al-Sheikh Dib signed an agreement for the aid at the bank's headquarters in the Red Sea city of Jeddah, the bank said in a statement.
The aid will be delivered in the form of a "loan" paid directly into the treasury of Yasser Arafat's PA under the title of "urgent aid to support the Palestinian funds and respond to the fundamental needs of the Palestinian people in resisting Israel."
The PA already received in March and April two $15-million payments of some $60 million pledged by the IDB over four months.
The Jerusalem Intifada Fund was created last October to support the families of Palestinians killed or wounded, and the Al-Aqsa Fund to "preserve the Islamic character of east Jerusalem" and support the Palestinian economy.
The two funds are supposed to total one billion dollars, but the Palestinians have complained that hardly any of the amounts promised has been paid to the PA. — (AFP, Jeddah)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)