The IDF’s Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) informed the Palestinian Authority (PA) that unless it ceases its economic boycott of the purchase of calves and sheep from Israel, the majority of the agricultural produce coming from the PA into Israel will be blocked in the near future.
COGAT is the unit responsible for implementing the civilian policy within Judea and Samaria and towards the Gaza Strip
The PA announced a ban on the purchase of Israeli livestock in which began in mid-September.
COGAT head Major General Kamil Abu Rukon stated that “Israel will not allow boycotts of any kind against Israeli produce.”
The PA’s “unilateral decision” is” hurting the economies of both parties,” he said, adding that after several inquiries to resolve the issue on various levels, he has warned the PA that if the situation does not return to what it previously was, Israel will not allow most of the PA agricultural produce into Israel.
The PA condemned the IDF’s statement.
PA spokesman Ibrahim Melhem stated Saturday that the government “has the right to diversify its sources of imports, as stipulated in the Paris Economic Agreement, and will continue to seek to replace Israeli products with Arab alternatives.”
Melhem also affirmed the PA’s decision to boycott Israeli hospitals and purchase medical services from hospitals in Egypt and Jordan instead.
He said the ban of calf imports from Israel and the decision to halt medical transfers in Israel are part of the government’s plan to economically disengage from Israel.
The PA has announced over the past months that it intends to fully disengage from the Israeli economy, a move analysts warned could collapse the PA’s economy.