Don’t withhold the Palestinian revenues urge Nordic nations!

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Protesters at a recent rally in Stockholm, Sweden, demonstrating in solidarity with the Palestinian people and demanding an immediate cease-fire

THE Nordic nations have voiced serious concerns over the withholding of Palestinian clearance revenues, further straining the already difficult fiscal situation of the Palestinian Authority.

Mirroring the recent Apulia summit’s G7 Leaders’ Communiqué, the Nordic countries have urged Israel to promptly release the withheld funds and to maintain correspondent banking services between Israeli and Palestinian banks.

‘Any action weakening the Palestinian Authority or worsening the economic situation in the West Bank must be avoided,’ stated the Nordic countries. ‘We emphasise that maintaining stability in the West Bank and preparing for one legitimate Palestinian government for the West Bank and Gaza is critical for regional security and in the interests of Palestinians as well as Israelis.’

‘The Nordic countries are committed to supporting the Palestinian Authority and the necessary reforms that it must undertake.’

The signatories of this statement include Lars Løkke Rasmussen, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Denmark; Elina Valtonen, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Finland; Thórdís Kolbrún Reykfjörd Gylfadóttir, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Iceland; Espen Barth Eide, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Norway; and Tobias Billström, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sweden.

On Wednesday, Prime Minister Mohammad Mustafa emphasised the government’s efforts towards financial stability, in collaboration with various Arab and international entities. He noted that, due to persistent governmental efforts and international pressure, the Israeli Ministry of Finance transferred 435 million Shekels from the withheld funds for April and May.

During the weekly cabinet meeting, the Prime Minister pointed out that Israel has doubled its deductions from clearance funds since the onset of its aggression on Gaza, now averaging 480 million shekels per month.

Meanwhile, the European Union has expressed profound concern over the Israeli military’s orders for the evacuation of hundreds of thousands of civilians from eastern Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip. The evacuation impacts approximately 250,000 people and includes patients from the Gaza European Hospital, one of the few partially functioning hospitals in the area.

Patients, including pregnant women and the elderly, have been forced to relocate to other facilities, such as the Nasser Hospital. Staff have also attempted to salvage medical equipment amidst the chaos.

‘This evacuation decision is certain to worsen overcrowding and cause severe shortages in the already overwhelmed remaining hospitals, at a time when access to emergency medical care is critical,’ stated High Representative Josep Borrell and Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarcic in a joint statement.

These forced evacuations are worsening an already catastrophic humanitarian situation in Gaza, with nearly 1.9 million people displaced within the densely populated Palestinian enclave. The top European Union officials reiterated calls for an immediate ceasefire to allow a surge of humanitarian assistance to Gaza.