Who cut off humanitarian aid to the Palestinians?

Nine countries have now suspended all funding to the UN Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) following accusations that a small number of its staff were involved in Hamas’ bloody attack on Israeli territory on 7 October. Israel does not hide that it wants to “close down” all activities of the agency and has declared that it wants to guarantee that UNRWA “will have no role” in what happens in the Palestinian territories after the war. However, for the Palestinian Authority, UNRWA needs “maximum support” and “uninterrupted support and assistance” to civilians.

Accusations against the UN agency for Palestinian refugees

There are clearly very strong arguments: based on as yet unproven accusations, an entire international humanitarian organization that has been operating in a destructive context for years is considered “terrorist” due to the actions of 0.09% of its employees. A strong choice. Even more so if you take it at a time when no hospital in the Gaza Strip can provide life-saving medical care in the event of a massive influx of wounded: this was recently confirmed by Doctors Without Borders. As always, civilians will pay the heaviest price.

Israel’s staunch ally, the United States, immediately announced the suspension of the funding after the allegations were announced to the institution’s staff. Washington’s choice was soon shared by a long list of countries: Canada, Australia, Italy, the United Kingdom, Finland, the Netherlands, Germany and Japan. However, Switzerland said it wanted to wait for more information before making a decision, and France said on Sunday that it did not expect any “new payments” to the institution in the first quarter of the year. However, Norway announced that it would continue its commitments. The UN agency for Palestinian refugees said it had already laid off 12 employees and planned to conduct a comprehensive internal investigation.

what is italy doing

“The Italian government suspended funding to UNRWA following Hamas’ horrific attack on Israel on October 7,” Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani said. “We suspended funding from the beginning following allegations that some of their employees were involved in the attack on Israel, but we continue to provide funding to other organizations such as the Red Cross and Red Crescent. We decided to stop aid immediately because some people may have been at least partially involved in actions against the Israeli civilian population .”

“It is shocking to see the suspension of funding to the agency in response to allegations against a small group of employees, especially given that UNRWA took immediate action by terminating their contract and calling for a transparent and independent investigation,” an agency memo said. , Which It is the main humanitarian agency in Gaza, on which millions of people depend for survival. UNRWA It operates shelters for more than a million people and provides food and basic health services even under bombardment. The agency shares the list of all its personnel with all collaborating countries, including Israel, every year.

“I call on countries that have suspended funding to reconsider their decisions before UNRWA is forced to suspend its humanitarian response. The lives of people in Gaza and regional stability also depend on this support,” says Philippe Lazzarini.Commissioner-General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees. “Palestinians in Gaza needed no more of this collective punishment,” he wrote to X.

26 thousand Palestinians were killed after the October 7 massacre

With 13,000 employees in Gaza, the majority of whom are Palestinians, the institution is the main organization assisting the population in the midst of a humanitarian disaster. More than 2 million of the region’s 2.3 million population depend on it for “complete survival”, including food and shelter. The war between Israel and Hamas has killed more than 26,000 Palestinians, destroyed large swaths of Gaza and displaced nearly 85 percent of the region’s population, according to local health officials. Approximately 1,200 people, most of them civilians, died and around 250 people were taken hostage in the terrorist attack in southern Israel. Israel blames Hamas for civilian casualties, claiming militants are hiding among the local population. Tel Aviv claims to have killed more than 9,000 militants in its air and ground attack on Gaza.

Source: Today IT