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UN’s Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA)

UNRWA Chief Asks Donors to Reconsider as Germany Joins Cascade Freezing Funds

The head of the UN’s Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA) urged donor countries not to freeze funds in the wake of allegations that staffers had participated in the October 7 massacre in southern Israel, calling the move “immensely irresponsible” as Germany and Scotland became the latest to announce funding freezes.

“It is shocking to see a suspension of funds to the Agency in reaction to allegations against a small group of staff, especially given the immediate action that UNRWA took by terminating their contracts and asking for a transparent independent investigation,” Commissioner General Philippe Lazzarini said Saturday night, January 27.

Israeli intelligence and investigations in the months following the terrorist attack led to the accusations, which were presented to the UN last week.

Ten countries - the US, Britain, Canada, Australia, Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Finland, Estonia, and Japan have said they are also suspending funding for the agency.

The US and Germany make up the agency’s two largest donors, providing around half of the $1.1 billion the agency collected in 2022.

Twelve United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East employees were allegedly “involved” in the attack, and the US funding is reportedly paused. It will resume subject to the investigation from the UN. (TOI / VFI News)

“Lord, we ask that everyone who has harmed Israelis within the Palestinian Authority be quickly apprehended and delivered to justice. We pray that UNRWA will be cleansed from terrorists and those who cooperate with them. We ask for justice and for the funding to go where it’s supposed to go, instead of supporting terrorism against Israel.”