Bereaved families and terror victims signed a letter calling on Trump to pressure the PA to stop paying stipends to terrorists convicted of murdering Israelis.
Over 100 bereaved Israeli families and victims of Palestinian terror signed a letter calling on President Donald Trump to pressure the Palestinian Authority (PA) to cease its policy of paying stipends to terrorists convicted of murdering Israelis.
In the letter, authored just days before Trump is slated to arrive in Israel, the families said the payments consisted of “incitement that motivates Palestinian youth to murder Israelis,” and urged the president to insist on an end to this “immoral policy…before any talks can commence.”
Among the signatories are families of terror victims spanning several decades, including the widows of Yossef Romano and Andre Spitzer, who were murdered in the 1972 massacre at the Munich Olympics; Sherri Mandell, whose 13-year-old son Koby was murdered in 2001; Adva Biton, mother of four-year-old Adele, who was critically wounded in a rock-throwing attack in 2013 and later succumbed to her wounds; and Amichai Ariel, whose 13-year-old daughter Hallel was stabbed to death in her bedroom in 2016.
The families also requested to meet with Trump so that he can hear the stories of “victims of decades-long Palestinian terror and violence.”
The letter comes days after convicted terrorist Tayseer Abu Sneineh, responsible for the murder of six Israelis, was elected mayor of Hebron and a square in the Palestinian city of Tulkarem was named after a terrorist.
Two weeks ago, senior PA official Nabil Shaath unequivocally rejected a request to end the PA’s policy of paying the terror stipends, calling the proposal “insane.”
“It is inconceivable that the PA continues to fund the terrorists who murdered our loved ones,” said Devorah Gonen, whose son Danny was murdered in 2015 while on a hike near the Israeli community of Dolev. “President Trump needs to put an end to this perverse policy led by the PA and its leader, the terrorist Abu Mazen [PA head Mahmoud Abbas].”
Not A Reward for Terror?
Yossi Tzur, father of Asaf Tzur, who was killed in a 2003 suicide bombing in Haifa, added that “as long as the PA continues to fund convicted terrorists and their families, it is not a partner for talks and certainly not for peace. Our message to President Trump is clear: Demand from the PA to stop funding terrorists.”
The Palestinians defend the payments, saying that the recipients are not terrorists, but “freedom fighters” and therefore rightfully rewarded. They further claim the payments are “social welfare for the families,” rather than a reward for terror.
The overwhelming majority of prisoners are not “fighters” who participated in any combat with soldiers, but terrorists who targeted civilians.