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unrwa scandal

US, other countries suspend aid to UNRWA after incriminating evidence of shows cooperation with Hamas terrorists

UNRWA fires several staff members for participating in Oct. 7 attack in Israel

United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in Gaza City (Photo: Shutterstock)

UNRWA, the United Nations agency tasked with providing aid to Palestinians, announced it fired several of its staff members who had reportedly participated in the Oct. 7 brutal attack on Israel's southern border communities.

About 3,000 Hamas terrorists and their accomplices slaughtered 1,200 Israeli men, women and children, took about 240 hostages and committed atrocities, including violent rape, beheadings, burning of bodies, torture and more.

The UNRWA announcement on Friday was made after Israeli authorities reportedly provided incriminating evidence regarding members of their organization and their affiliation with the terrorist group.

Philippe Lazzarini, the head of UNRWA (UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, explained that the decision to fire some of its employees was “to protect the agency’s ability to deliver humanitarian assistance.”

“Any UNRWA employee who was involved in acts of terror will be held accountable, including through criminal prosecution,” Lazzarini said.

UN Chief António Guterres, claiming he was shocked by the UNRWA links to the terrorist group, reportedly vowed that there would be an “urgent and comprehensive independent review of UNRWA."

An unnamed Israeli official told the Axios news site that Israel Defense Forces and Military Intelligence had gathered information about the UNRWA workers and their involvement ties to Hamas terrorist activity.

“This was strong and corroborated intelligence,” the official revealed. “A lot of the intelligence is a result of interrogations of militants who were arrested during the October 7 attack.”

Following the UNRWA announcement, Washington announced it would temporarily suspend its financial aid to the organization that is supposed to provide relief and human development services for Palestinians in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, also known as Judea and Samaria.

The United States is currently the largest single donor of the controversial UN agency.

U.S. State Department Spokesperson Matthew Miller said the U.S. Biden administration is "extremely troubled" by the news of the incriminating links between the UNRWA and Hamas. He stressed that U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken had told Guterres, "There must be complete accountability for anyone who participated in the heinous attacks."

David May, research manager and senior research analyst for the Foundation For Defense of Democracies (FDD) blasted UNRWA operations.

“U.S. taxpayer dollars helped cover the paychecks for some of the perpetrators of the worst massacre of Jews since the Holocaust. This should convince the United States and Western allies to scrap UNRWA and transfer its responsibilities to organizations with accountability,” May stated.

“Support for terrorism among UNRWA employees isn’t a bug, it’s a feature,” he added, referring many other previous instances of its workers embracing terrorism and antisemitism.

The administration of former U.S. President Donald Trump suspended its aid to UNRWA because of its link to terrorism and antisemitism. However, the current U.S. government under Biden restored aid to UNRWA in 2021, after it claimed to be committed to “zero tolerance” regarding antisemitism.

Great Britain, Italy, Canada and Finland have joined the U.S. and has also announced it will suspend financial aid to the UNRWA.

“The UK is appalled by allegations that UNRWA staff were involved in the 7 October attack against Israel, a heinous act of terrorism that the UK Government has repeatedly condemned,” the Foreign Office in London announced.

Israel has long accused the UN agency of perpetuating the conflict by promoting incitement against Israel and Jews.

"I call for more nations to join in," Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz tweeted on X.

"UNRWA's ties with Hamas, providing refuge for terrorists, and perpetuating its rule, are undeniable,” the Israeli foreign minister emphasized.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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