Home » US President Biden signs $1.2T government funding bill that bans UNRWA funding

US President Biden signs $1.2T government funding bill that bans UNRWA funding

by Derek Andrews
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US President Joe Biden signedHB 2882, referred to as the “Additional Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2024,” on Sunday. This act offers federal authorities funding by September 2024 and features a provision that prohibits funds from getting used for the UN Aid and Works Company for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA).

The act additionally cuts funding to the UN Fee of Inquiry in opposition to Israel and continues the US’s annual safety dedication of $3.3 billion to the nation by grants, which shall be disbursed inside 30 days of the act’s enactment.

Biden characterised the invoice as a compromise and celebrated its passage, saying it “retains the federal government open, invests within the American individuals, and strengthens our economic system and nationwide safety.” He went on to listing what he noticed because the invoice’s accomplishments, stating:

It rejects excessive cuts from Home Republicans and expands entry to baby care, invests in most cancers analysis, funds psychological well being and substance use care, advances American management overseas, and offers assets to safe the border that my Administration efficiently fought to incorporate. That’s excellent news for the American individuals.

Israeli Minister of International Affairs Israel Katz praised the act’s prohibition on UNRWA funds, saying “UNRWA is a part of the issue and can’t be a part of the answer. UNRWA won’t stay in Gaza after Hamas is eliminated.” He repeated Israel’s declare that “hundreds of UNRWA staff are concerned in Hamas’s terrorist actions and their services have been used for terrorist functions” and referred to as on different international locations to ban UNRWA funding.

In distinction, US Senator Bernie Sanders voted in opposition to the act and criticized the act’s assist to Israel and ban on UNRWA funding, saying it could exacerbate struggling in Gaza. He stated:

Whereas a whole bunch of hundreds of Palestinian youngsters face hunger in Gaza, this invoice truly prohibits funding to UNRWA, the important thing United Nations assist company delivering life-saving humanitarian assist. This may solely intensify the already horrific state of affairs in Gaza. This invoice additionally offers one other $3.3 billion in U.S. navy assist for Netanyahu’s right-wing authorities to proceed this barbaric struggle. The Netanyahu authorities mustn’t obtain one other penny from U.S. taxpayers.

Maya Berry, govt director of the Arab American Institute (AAI), joined Sanders in criticizing the invoice, telling Al Jazeera, “Our political course of has chosen to chop US funding to actually the one entity that may deal with the extent of struggling and scale of struggling that’s occurring in Gaza proper now.”

In January, UNRWA announced that it fired a number of staff who have been allegedly concerned within the October 7 Hamas attacks on Israel. In response to this, UN Secretary-Basic António Guterres announced a evaluation of whether or not the UNRWA is “ensur[ing] neutrality” and correctly responding to allegations of attainable breaches. This led a number of international locations, together with the US and Canada to suspend their funding for the UNRWA after reviews emerged that 12 UNRWA workers members have been a part of October 7. Some international locations, like Australia and Finland, have resumed their funding.

The European Fee (EC) has increased their assist for Palestinians by allocating an additional EUR 68 million by worldwide companions, including to the EUR 82 million already designated for the UN Aid and Works Company (UNRWA) in 2024, totaling EUR 150 million.

Source / Picture: jurist.org

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