Itongadol.- Senior Fatah official Mahmoud Aloul declared on Monday a ban on the sale of products from six major Israeli companies in the Palestinian territories.
Speaking at a press conference in Bira on Monday, Aloul said the Israeli companies that would be banned included Strauss, Tnuva, Osem, Elite, Prigat and Jafora, and that the ban would come into effect on Wednesday, according to Ma\’an News Agency.
The sellers are to be given a two week window in order to get rid of existing products from the banned Israeli companies.
The decision comes in response to a move by the Israeli government to withhold taxes to the Palestinian Authority.
Jerusalem last Wednesday decided for the second month in a row to withhold the transfer of tax revenues it collects for the Palestinian Authority because of the PA\’s decision to join the International Criminal Court and initiate action against Israel.
One senior government official, explaining the decision to withhold the funds, said that monthly transfers will be held up until Israel “finishes formulating its response to the Palestinian Authority\’s unilateral move to the ICC, a step that runs contrary to all previous agreements.”
The careful phrasing of the announcement indicated that Israel was weighing other options as well.
In January, after Israel froze the transfer of that month\’s revenues, Chief PLO negotiator Saeb Erekat hinted that in response the Palestinians might dissolve the PA and call on Israel to fully assume responsibility for the West bank and Gaza Strip.
The US has made clear it opposes holding up the funds, saying that it only increases the tensions.