Jerusalem gets 1st Palestinian bank branch
18 Apr 2017 - 10:47
JERUSALEM: The first branch of a Palestinian bank was inaugurated Monday in Israel-held East Jerusalem, in the first such move in the occupied territory in decades.
The National Bank (TNB) opened its branch in Jerusalem's Dahiat Al-Barid district to offer banking services to the city's residents.
This is the first time for a Palestinian bank to operate in Jerusalem since 1967 when Israel captured the city during the 1967 Middle East war.
Israel has never allowed Palestinian or Arab banks to operate in East Jerusalem since its occupation.
The TNB seems to have used a "legal loophole" to open its branch in Dahiat Al-Barid, which Israel considers a part of the West Bank, not East Jerusalem.
Describing the move as a "milestone", TNB chairman Talal Nasereddin said the new branch had been delayed for two years due to multiple obstacles and red tape.
He said the new branch will help provide banking services to Jerusalem's residents without the need to cross Israeli checkpoints and barriers.
The new branch in Jerusalem, Nasereddin said, bodes well for the economic and social prosperity of the area.
Two banks, the Bank of Palestine and Bank of Jordan, are currently planning to open branches in East Jerusalem.