The United States is withholding more than half of its planned funding of a United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees, renewing debate over the Trump administration's controversial decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
The agency is now confronted with a massive unpaid bill at a time when it is facing huge cuts from the Trump administration for its education and health care programs and uncertainty over further USA giving.
Ms. Anderson, who is from Derry, described the decision taken by the Trump administration as "deplorable" and predicted it would have a "devastating impact" on people living in Palestine. The agency provides health care, education and social services to 5 million Palestinians across the Middle East. "When we say that we're basically looking at the fact that you've got, basically they're considering Palestinian as a refugee".
But she declined to say whether the United States has given UNRWA a list of specific changes or reforms it needs to undertake to unlock the rest of the US funding.
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". With the Palestinians no longer willing to talk peace, why should we make any of these massive future payments to them?"
When asked if the decision to cut the UNRWA funding was related to Trump's January 2 threat to end the aid, which he broadcasted via Twitter, Nauert refused to comment.
In a Twitter post, Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch, said the U.S. was "holding Palestinian kids' humanitarian needs hostage to political agendas".At the United Nations, Guterres told reporters that the services provided by UNRWA were "of extreme importance, not only for the well-being of these populations. but also in my opinion and an opinion that is shared by most worldwide observers, including some Israeli ones, it is an important factor of stability".
"This is not aimed at punishing anyone", spokeswoman Heather Nauert told reporters.
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Since then, administration officials have indicated that the president thinks that amount of wall funding is insufficient. In the meantime, the White House is rejecting Sen. "It's the opposite of what I campaigned for", Trump said.
The statement also delivered a resilient message in the face of Donald Trump's funding freeze, emphasising that Belgium, together with its fellow European countries and the EU Commission, was "by far" UNRWA's biggest donor.
Israel's United Nations envoy Danny Danon said the agency misuses aid and "supports anti-Israel propaganda, perpetuates the plight of Palestinian refugees and encourages hate".
De Croo said the Belgian government stepped up in response to the urgent call for help by the commissioner-general of UNRWA, an agency that provides humanitarian help to millions of Palestinian refugees. The Trump administration funds UNRWA to the tune of $370 million in 2017 alone.
"We believe that the methods of extortion and pressure of the U.S. Administration on the United Nations, especially with regard to programs that do not suit Israel and rightwing extremists, are unacceptable to the worldwide community and UN member states".
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"At the same time, given the long, trusted, and historic relationship between the United States and UNRWA, this reduced contribution threatens one of the most successful and innovative human development endeavors in the Middle East".