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EU aids to Palestine
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Wednesday, 25 February 2004
European Commission president Romano Prodi said on Feb. 18 he was considering unblocking a multi-million euro aid package to the Palestinians to help them cover essential costs, international news agencies report. Speaking after a meeting here with Palestinian Prime Minister Ahmed Qorei, Prodi said he had received assurances of greater transparency within the management of the Palestinian Authoritys finances and was considering making the money available. The commission has frozen the aid, worth 40 million euros ($50 million), and put several conditions on unblocking it. "There is an effort to make progress in this direction. Answering that, I have committed myself to examine immediately this aspect of the problem, to try to understand how the control is done, and give an immediate answer for the possibility of unblocking this amount of money," Prodi said. He said the Palestinian delegation had "given the fullest assurances about the transparency of the process of paying salaries to Palestinian public officers." EU aid to the Palestinians amounted to about 3 50 million euros ($440 million) last year.
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