EU and the Netherlands give €15 million to the PA

PNN/ Ramallah/

The European Union is making today, Thursday, a contribution of €15 million to the payment of June salaries and pensions of over 65,000 Palestinian civil servants and pensioners in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. This contribution, which is channelled through the PEGASE mechanism, is being funded by the European Union (€14.0 million) and the Government of the Netherlands (€1.0 million earmarked specifically for PA salaries in the justice sector).

”Today’s contribution by the European Union to the Palestinian Authority’s salaries and pensions takes place during the holy month of Ramadan, a period during which solidarity, peace and cooperation has particular importance,” said the Deputy EU Representative Mr. David Geer.

The European Union is committed to continue supporting the PA in providing basic services to the Palestinian people. Cooperation between the EU and the PA aims to improve the lives of all Palestinians and help them move towards a viable Palestinian state he added.

“Equal rights, fair play, justice, are all like the air: we all have it, or none of us has it (Maya Angelou). Equal treatment under the law is crucial to state building. PEGASE helps the PA build a fair and equitable justice sector. These values are at the core of the EU and why the Netherlands fully supports this program”. said Peter Mollema, the Netherlands Representative.

Most of the European Union’s assistance to the Palestinian Authority is channelled through PEGASE, the financial mechanism launched in 2008 to support the PA Reform and Development Plan (2008-2010) and subsequent Palestinian national plans. As well as helping to meet a substantial proportion of its running costs, European funds support major reform and development programmes in key ministries, to help prepare the PA for statehood. Since February 2008, over €2.0 billion have been disbursed through the PEGASE Direct Financial Support programmes. In addition, the EU has provided assistance to the Palestinian people through UNRWA and a wide range of cooperation projects.