US pledges assistance for the Palestinian people

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US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L) and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah in the occupied West Bank on Tuesday [Alex Brandon/Pool via AFP]

WASHINGTON, USA – The United States is in the process of providing more than $360 million in assistance to the Palestinian people, Secretary Anthony Blinken, announced Wednesday.

“This includes $38 million in new assistance to support humanitarian efforts in the West Bank and Gaza.  This new assistance includes nearly $33 million for the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) in support of its West Bank and Gaza operations, and an additional $5.5 million to humanitarian partners. This critical assistance will support humanitarian organizations to provide emergency shelter, food, relief items, and health care, as well as mental health and psychosocial support for those who experienced trauma,” the US Department of State, outlined in a press statement. “Additionally, working with Congress, the State Department and USAID intends to provide $75 million in additional development and economic assistance over the next year that will support relief and recovery in the West Bank and Gaza.”

This funding will advance private sector growth and access to basic needs and services, such as providing health care and addressing food insecurity. Pending completion of congressional notification, another $10 million will support programs that support reconciliation work to reduce tension and violence over the long term.

This assistance is in addition to the more than $250 million in economic, development, security, and humanitarian assistance for the Palestinian people announced in March and April, bringing planned US assistance to more than $360 million.  All of these funds will be administered in a way that benefit the Palestinian people — not Hamas, which has only brought misery and despair to Gaza. The U.S. government is also firmly committed to ensuring all its assistance is provided consistent with applicable US law, including the Taylor Force Act,  according to a press statement on Wednesday, May 26.

“US foreign assistance for the Palestinian people serves important US interests and values. It provides critical relief to those in great need, fosters economic development, and supports Israeli-Palestinian understanding, security coordination, and stability.  It also aligns with the values and interests of our allies and partners. The United States will continue to encourage other donors to support humanitarian and recovery efforts in the West Bank and Gaza, and programs and activities that work toward a common goal of stability and progress for Israelis and Palestinians alike,” the US Department of State said in the press statement.

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