WASHINGTON - The US Senate unanimously approved the “Hamas law” Friday, which limits the United States government to transferring funds to the Palestinian Authority via routes that bypass the Hamas government.
The senate vote was the last stage in passing the bill, which was approved one month ago by the House of Representatives.
The new law enables humanitarian aid transfer to the Palestinians, but places strict limits on the money transfers. Likewise, the law limits the movement of Palestinian diplomats in the US.
The law rules that the PA will not be the recipient of any aid money until the president declares that the following conditions have been fulfilled by the Palestinians:
- No governmental office or agency in the PA is governed by a terror organization, and no representative of any terror organization serves in any governmental or non-governmental office.
- The Palestinian Authority under the leadership of the Hamas is demanded to recognize Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state, it must commit to all agreements signed between the sides thus far and the understandings reached in the framework of the road map.
- The PA has advanced moves proving that they are purifying the Palestinian security forces of terrorists, dismantling terror infrastructure and cooperating with Israel’s security establishment.
- Incitement against Israel has completely stopped.
- Democracy, rule of law and financial transparency are established.
The new law categorically forbids giving any direct aid to the Palestinian Authority, with the exception of aid money to help fund the system of democratic elections, which will be given to the Election Committee, if the US president can prove to Congress that its members do not belong to or are funded by any terror organization. Another exception is financial aid to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ office and his personal security detail.
The new legislation obligates the president to sign a special concession every six months so the Palestinians can continues operating their representation in the United Nations in New York. Palestinian diplomats are limited to movement in a radius of 40 kilometers from the UN building in New York.
Meanwhile, the European Union announced last week that they would transfer emergency aid money to the Palestinians amounting to 100 million Euros. The money will reach the PA via a route that bypasses the Hamas and will reach the Welfare and Health ministries, and other humanitarian aid destinations.