Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh presented a “Reforms Proposal” to the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee’s (AHLC) biannual session last week in Brussels. The 40-page plan, a copy of which was obtained by Israel Hayom, outlines comprehensive reforms in various areas—but does not include a plan to reduce anti-Israel incitement.

Founded in 1993, the 15-member AHLC, a United Nations body, serves as the principal policy-level coordination mechanism for development assistance to the Palestinian people. Its primary mission is “to promote dialogue between donors, the Palestinian Authority, and the Government of Israel.”

AHLC members are categorized into seven groups: the Arab nations, the European Union, the United States, Japan, international institutions, European countries and other nations. Current members include the United States, European Union, United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, Russia, Norway, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Canada, the P.A., Israel, Jordan, Egypt and Tunisia.

P.A. President Mahmoud Abbas was put under considerable pressure by the United States and European Union to implement institutional, legal and societal reforms, including measures to curb public corruption. The Europeans pushed the Palestinians to formulate a comprehensive plan, and the Americans, too, applied additional pressure once the Biden administration entered the White House.

The Palestinian need to produce such a document intensified after financial aid from Europe was delayed. Some E.U. countries, spearheaded by the Hungarian representative, demanded last year that the Palestinians erase anti-Israeli content from their school textbooks, making it a precondition for the transfer of money to the P.A.

The postponed aid, along with declining external donor funds, exacerbated the economic situation in the areas under P.A. control in Judea and Samaria. In Ramallah, P.A. officials concluded that they could no longer evade the international community’s demands, and must demonstrate to donor countries a willingness to implement the aforementioned reforms.

However, as stated, the reform plan presented by Shtayyeh, which was drafted at the behest of Abbas, does not indicate a willingness to implement fundamental changes as they pertain to reducing incitement against Israel, but  rather the opposite. The document includes a call to safeguard Palestinian culture and the Palestinian national narrative against attempts by the “Israeli occupation authorities to distort information and steal the Palestinians’ folklore and heritage.”

“A battle is raging over the dominant narrative of the conflict. The goal needs to be to ensure the Palestinian narrative and promote it. Ties with international organizations must be built to challenge Israeli falsification of historical Palestinian facts,” the document states.

“Our embassies across the globe and media apparatuses must stand against the efforts to falsify the Palestinian narrative. Therefore the government will bolster its media presence, among other things, in line with the recent initiative to launch a satellite television station for youngsters in addition to the existing official television station.”

The leadership in Ramallah desperately needs money and is presenting an ambitious reform plan to the world. As stated, not only does it fail to address incitement against Israel, but also includes accusations meant to justify continued Palestinian attacks.

This article first appeared in Israel Hayom.


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