House Dems demand transparency on review of frozen Palestinian aid funds

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By allmepadmin / July 25 2018

On Wednesday, nine house democrats called for greater transparency from the Trump Administration over the review process of US aid to the Palestinian Authority and Gaza.

Their demand focused on getting access to the White House’s timeline along with other key details on US aid to Palestine as they expressed concerns that withholding funds from the region could worsen an already critical humanitarian crisis in Gaza.

The call for transparency comes after the Trump Administration’s January decision to freeze $65 million from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, which is responsible for providing aid and assistance to Palestinians.

Furthermore, the administration also said at the time that it was reviewing its aid to the Palestinians after the Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas refused to meet with administration officials about their decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. This freeze includes the USAID Conflict Management and Mitigation grant program, which provides $12 million in annual funding to Israeli-Palestinian peacebuilding programs.

The letter comes as the Trump Administration is preparing to reveal their Middle East peace plan, though no timetable has been shared for when the plan will be announced or implemented.

Arguing that the funds are crucial to alleviating the humanitarian crisis in the region and essential to preventing Hamas from taking advantage of the situation, their letter warned that the:

…impact of the US funding freeze could be catastrophic: 140,000 people will cease to receive emergency food and non-food assistance, 42,000 patients will not receive essential health services, 50,000 youths will lack access to life skills development, and 12,250 people will lose paid entrepreneurship opportunities.

Photo Credit: The Times of Israel

House Dems demand transparency on review of frozen Palestinian aid funds

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