Norwegian MP concerned over Norway's "indirect" funding of Palestinian terrorism
[07.03.2013, 05:46pm, Thu. GMT]
Norwegian state-owned NRK TV is continuing its investigation into Norway's financial support of the Palestinian Authority's (PA) budget. The PA uses its budget to pay the salaries of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails for security offences, including those serving multiple life sentences for murder, according to Palestinian Media Watch (PMW). Some prisoners, it is reported, can earn up to 18,000 kroner per month (£2095), nearly three times the Norwegian public pension base rate.In an interview with NRK TV, Norwegian MP, Peter Gitmark, expressed his concern over Norway's "indirect" contributions to Palestinian terrorism:
MP Peter Gitmark: "This is very serious and especially the fact that it almost seems to be an aid program to terror-convicted prisoners in Israel, not to mention that it increases according to the length of the sentence."
NRK TV newsreader: "Do you think that Norwegian tax money is being used to fund terrorism?"
MP Peter Gitmark: "Yes, this is an indirect form of that."
Gitmark went on to criticise former Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre -- for defending Norway's contributions to the PA's budget and stating that the PA payments were social welfare to the families and not salaries -- before calling for a Parliamentary Scrutiny Committee to look into the affair: "Parliament has been informed on several occasions by then Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre. It now appears that former Foreign Minister Støre, was wrong and informed Parliament wrongly. Naturally the [Parliamentary] Scrutiny Committee (Committee on Scrutiny and Constitutional Affairs) should examine this and check if this should have consequences in Parliament because of the bad information."
The Commentator reported last week that the Norwegian government appears to be one of the first European countries to be seriously reconsidering its untargeted aid to the Palestinian territories on the basis of recent reports into incitement and anti-Semitism by PMW.
State Secretary Torgeir Larsen stated at the time: "There are examples in the book (PMW's 'Deception') that clearly express hatred. There are also examples of Antisemitism, which you find in Palestinian society."