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Palestinian president requests Arab aid after Israel withholds funds over ICC bid

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CAIRO — Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has asked the Arab League to provide a "safety net" of $100 million a month to cover tax revenues withheld by Israel in retaliation for his attempt to join the International Criminal Court.

PHOTO: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, center left, Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sabah al-Khaled al-Sabah, center, and Arab League Secretary General Nabil Elaraby, right, hair an Arab foreign ministers urgent meeting at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Jan. 15, 2015. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, center left, Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sabah al-Khaled al-Sabah, center, and Arab League Secretary General Nabil Elaraby, right, hair an Arab foreign ministers urgent meeting at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Jan. 15, 2015. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

During a meeting with Arab foreign ministers in Cairo on Thursday, Abbas also called for the formation of a committee to launch a new bid seeking a U.N. Security Council resolution on ending the Israeli occupation, a month after the council rejected a similar initiative.

The ICC bid is part of a wider strategy aimed at bringing international pressure to bear on Israel. In response, Israel froze the monthly transfer of $120 million in taxes that it collects for the Palestinians, forcing the Palestinian Authority to halt salary payments for 153,000 employees.

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