Iran says it is giving over 40 million euros to the cash-strapped Palestinian Authority. The donation was announced at a conference on the Palestinian issue in Tehran although Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki failed to say how or when the cash would be delivered.
It will help Hamas but is something of a drop in the ocean. The West has cut off hundreds of millions of euros in funding, to put pressure on Ismail Haniyeh’s administration to recognize Israel. In Gaza, the Islamic militant movement that won January’s Palestinian elections, has been meeting rival factions to try to persuade them to join a unity government. However the long-dominant Fatah movement did not take part in the talks. It has previously rejected joining a Hamas-led administration. While financial help has also been pledged by the Arab League and Russia, the immediate cash crisis is proving critical. In recent days, Palestinian police stormed a government building to demand that overdue salaries be paid.