OAN’s Brooke Mallory
3:12 PM – Friday, January 26, 2024
Due to numerous claims that United Nations (UN) staff members were involved in the Hamas attacks on October 7th, the U.S. has decided to suspend financing for UNRWA, the UN’s organization for Palestinians.
According to the UNRWA, the agency has now fired “several employees” and launched an inquiry into data provided by Israel. However, many reports have stated that at least 12 employees were discovered to have been directly involved in the attack.
Antonio Guterres, the secretary-general of the UN, expressed his horror at the news and demanded a prompt investigation.
In the historic and tragic attack, Hamas killed at least 1,200 individuals, the majority of them civilians.
250 individuals were also kidnapped during the incident.
The U.S. State Department declared that it was “extremely troubled” by the claims that UN staff members were involved in the attack and announced its intention to temporarily cease funding.
Israel purportedly sent UNRWA “information about the alleged involvement of several UNRWA employees in the horrific attacks on Israel on October 7,” according to UNRWA chief Philippe Lazzarini, who made the announcement on Friday.
He claimed that UNRWA has now cut its relations with many staff and that they are currently under investigation.
The Israeli prime minister’s advisor revealed to the BBC that “people who are on their [UNRWA] salaries” were involved in the Hamas assaults on October 7th.
Additionally, teachers employed by the UNRWA had “openly celebrated” the October 7th attack, according to Mark Regev, a senior advisor to the Israeli Prime Minister and former Israeli ambassador to the U.K.
He also mentioned that an Israeli abductee claimed to have been “held in the house of someone who worked for UNRWA” before she was later freed.
“They have a union which is controlled by Hamas and I think it’s high time that the UN investigated these links between UNRWA and Hamas,” Regev added.
The investigation was requested by UN Chief Antonio Guterres, according to Lazzarini.
He went on to say that the probe had to ensure that any UNRWA staff member “shown to have participated [in] or abetted” the October 7th attack was fired and that paperwork was submitted for possible criminal prosecution.
According to reports, Guterres’s request for a “thorough and swift investigation” was warmly received in Washington, D.C.
Additionally, the EU said in a statement that it was “extremely concerned” about the claims and that it would decide what to do next “based on the result of the full and comprehensive investigation.”
The EU, the U.S., and Germany are a few of UNRWA’s major financial supporters.
The UNRWA provides aid and other resources to Palestinians in Gaza, the West Bank, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon by offering them healthcare, education, and humanitarian relief, financially backed by U.S. tax dollars.
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