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PA finance minister meets Quartet envoy Blair

Jan. 29, 2013 10:45 A.M. (Updated: Feb. 1, 2013 9:35 A.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Palestinian Authority Finance Minister Nabil Qassis met with Middle East Quartet envoy Tony Blair in Ramallah on Monday.

Qassis called on the Quartet to intervene in the PA's political crisis and pressure Israel to release Palestinian tax revenues withheld since last November as punishment for the UN's acceptance of Palestine as a non-member state.

The minister stressed that financial support must be provided to the PA to help meet its obligations.

The Ramallah-based government has been hard-pressed to pay more than $300 million in monthly expenditures since Israel announced it would confiscate $100 million dollars it collects in customs taxes on their behalf each month.

Full salaries for public sector workers have not been paid in almost three months and government initiatives to increase revenue by collecting years worth of electricity and water bills from the public have been hampered by street protests.

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