UNRWA, A Global Ban

Global Ban on UNRWA: Employees Were Involved in the Massacre

After Israel exposed that 12 employees of the UN agency for Palestinian refugees participated in the October 7 massacre, many countries announced the suspension of funding and called for an investigation into the organization's actions in Gaza.

A general strike by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) in the Balata camp, in the West Bank city of Nablus, on January 24, 2023. (Photo: Nasser Ishtayeh, Flash90)

After Israel provided information and evidence to the UNRWA Commissioner-General, Philippe Lazzarini, regarding 12 agency employees involved in the October 7th massacre, Lazzarini immediately terminated the employment contracts of the workers and ordered an investigation.

Following the unfolding revelation, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres announced an immediate investigation into the event and also informed of the existence of a comprehensive review of UNRWA's activities in Gaza.

Palestinians protest demanding compensation for damaged homes in the 2014 war, outside the headquarters of "UNRWA", in Gaza City, on September 5, 2022. (Photo: Attia Muhammed, Flash90)

Foreign Minister: Calls on additional countries to halt funding to UNRWA

Australia, Canada, Italy, and Britain also announced the suspension of funding to the organization. In response to this, senior Palestinian Authority official Husam al-Sheikh issued a statement saying, "We call on countries that announced the suspension of their support for UNRWA to reconsider immediately."

Many countries declared the suspension of fund transfers to the organization. The U.S. State Department stated, "The U.S. is very disturbed by allegations that 12 UNRWA employees may be involved in the Hamas terrorist attack on Israel on October 7. The Department of State temporarily halted additional funding for UNRWA while we investigate these allegations and assess the steps that the UN is taking to address them. Full responsibility must be taken for anyone who participated in the heinous attacks on October 7."

Palestinians protest demanding compensation for damaged homes in the 2014 war, outside the headquarters of "UNRWA", in Gaza City, on September 5, 2022. (Photo: Attia Muhammed, Flash90)

Foreign Minister Israel Katz called on other countries to stop funding UNRWA, stating, "The UN must immediately dismiss the heads of UNRWA, conduct a transparent and thorough investigation into all events at UNRWA-Hamas in Gaza. I call on other countries to follow the lead of those who announced the suspension of funding. Many UNRWA employees are Hamas operatives who assist in terrorist activities and maintain its rule. We must ensure that UNRWA is not part of the post-Gaza era, and other responsible bodies will take its place."

Palestinians protest demanding compensation for damaged homes in the 2014 war, outside the headquarters of "UNRWA", in Gaza City, on September 5, 2022. (Photo: Attia Muhammed, Flash90)

Israeli Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan wrote, "It is symbolic that on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, it was revealed that UNRWA employees participated in the October 7th massacre. The UN has not only become a weapon in the illegitimate struggle against our existence but also physically acts to destroy us."

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