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UNRWA: Germany stops payments for Palestinian aid organization

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UNRWA: Germany stops payments for Palestinian aid organization

Some employees of the UN relief agency UNRWA in Gaza are said to have been involved in the massacre on October 7th. Several other countries cut funds.

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Germany does not want to pay any more money to the organization for the time being because of the alleged involvement of some employees of the UN Palestinian relief organization UNRWA in the Hamas massacre in Israel. “Until the clarification is complete, Germany, in coordination with other donor countries, will temporarily not approve any new funds for UNRWA in Gaza,”
said the Foreign Office and the Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).. In any case, there are currently no new commitments pending, it said.

The federal government supported the UN relief organization UNRWA with more than 200 million euros in 2023 alone; Other Western countries are also important donors to UNRWA. Since October 7, humanitarian aid provided through UNRWA and development cooperation funds have been used to finance basic supplies such as water, food, emergency shelter, hygiene and sanitation as well as medical supplies for the people in the Gaza Strip and in particular for the families who have fled to the south of the region , it continued.

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At the same time, the ministries emphasized that humanitarian aid for the Palestinians would continue. A few days ago, funding for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the UN children’s fund Unicef ​​was increased by seven million euros. UNRWA is vital for the basic services of the Palestinian population.

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It is therefore absolutely right that UNRWA acted immediately in the face of the allegations against employees and that Commissioner General Philippe Lazzarini dismissed the suspects and announced an investigation.

Employees involved in massacre

Lazzarini reacted critically to the payment stop. He said it was endangering the work of the organization. He called on countries that have suspended funding to change course. “These decisions threaten our ongoing humanitarian work across the region, including and especially in the Gaza Strip.”

Israel’s foreign minister called for the UNRWA chief to resign. “Mr. Lazzarini, please resign,” wrote Israel Katz on X.

Israel had provided the aid organization with information that twelve of the organization’s several thousand employees in the Gaza Strip were said to have been involved in the Hamas massacre on October 7th. They were immediately released. Lazzarini and UN Secretary-General António Guterres were horrified and threatened those affected with criminal consequences. On October 7, terrorists from Hamas and other extremist Palestinian groups killed more than 1,200 people in Israel.

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While the USA, Canada, Australia, Great Britain and Italy suspended their aid payments to UNRWA as a result, the Foreign Office initially only expressed “deep concern” about the suspicions against the UNRWA employees.

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