In an effort to counter terrorism and help establish the rule of law, American taxpayers have delivered to the Palestinian Authority equipment and training for civil security forces, reports Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.
The report was obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request by the Federation of American Scientists, which pointed out that while the document was not classified, it still took two years for the government to respond appropriately to the FOIA request.
The document shows the U.S. State Department “provided crime-scene investigation (CSI) equipment to Palestinian security forces to encourage a ‘move away from a confession-based investigation process.'”
“The report provides a snapshot of U.S. security assistance to the Palestinian Authority (PA) in March-August 2016, when the U.S. provided training as well as technical support to enhance the quality and professionalism of Palestinian security practices. The report also describes steps taken by the State Department to ensure that any such assistance would not be diverted to unauthorized purposes,” FAS said.
FAS said U.S. support for PA security forces and the criminal-justice sector in the West Bank has averaged around $100 million since 2008, according to the Congressional Research Service.
This month, however, President Trump has threatened to cut off aid to the Palestinians if they refuse to engage in peace talks with Israel. Trump already has reduced aid to the U.N. fund that assists Palestinian refugees, sending just $60 million of a pledged $125 million.
The funding cited in the report to Congress was “given to train, reform, advise, house, and provide nonlethal equipment for PA civil security forces in the West Bank loyal to President Abbas.”
“This aid is aimed at countering militants from organizations such as Hamas and Palestine Islamic Jihad-Shaqaqi Faction, and establishing the rule of law for an expected Palestinian state,” the report said.