January 06, 2007

U.S. to Give Abbas Forces $86 Million Amid Power Struggle

The Bush administration will provide $86 million to help security forces loyal to Mahmoud Abbas, expanding U.S. involvement in his struggle with Hamas, according to documents seen on Friday. The U.S. money will be used to "assist the Palestinian Authority presidency in fulfilling PA commitments under the road map (peace plan) to dismantle the infrastructure of terrorism and establish law and order in the West Bank and Gaza," according to a U.S. government document. It said Lt.-Gen. Keith Dayton, the U.S. security coordinator in the region, would implement the program "to strengthen and reform elements of the Palestinian security sector controlled by the PA presidency." Hamas lawmaker Mushir al-Masri accused Washington of helping to mount a "coup" against the Hamas-led government.