G7 calls Israel to uphold banking services, release funds to Palestinian authority

(MENAFN) During their meeting in Italy, G7 finance ministers called on Israel to ensure that Palestinian banks can continue accessing Israeli banking services, in light of Israel's threat to isolate these banks from its financial system. In their final statement, the ministers emphasized the necessity for Israel to maintain correspondent banking services between Israeli and Palestinian banks. They also urged Israel to release withheld clearance revenues to the Palestinian Authority, highlighting the urgent financial needs of the Palestinian government.

Additionally, the ministers called for Israel to remove or ease measures that negatively impact trade to avoid worsening the economic situation in the West Bank. US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen had earlier warned of a potential humanitarian crisis if Israel proceeds with its threat to isolate Palestinian banks. Yellen expressed particular concern about the implications of such actions, noting that these banking channels are essential for processing transactions that facilitate approximately USD8 billion annually in imports from Israel, including essential goods like electricity, water, fuel, and food. These channels also support around USD2 billion annually in Palestinian exports, which are crucial for Palestinian livelihoods.

The G7's appeal underscores the importance of maintaining financial connectivity and economic stability in the region, urging Israel to consider the broader humanitarian and economic impacts of its potential actions against Palestinian banks. 



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