Statement on Suspension of Funding to the U.N Relief and Works Agency

On January 26, 2024, the US announced it is pausing its funding of UNRWA, the primary agency providing humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza, 1.1 million of whom are already at risk of starvation, following allegations that 12 individual staff members were connected with the horrific October 7 attacks. These allegations are serious, and it is important that they are now being investigated. 

However, we cannot allow millions to suffer in the face of an unimaginable humanitarian crisis in Gaza where 85% of the population has been displaced, and the entire 2.2 million population is facing acute food insecurity with 1 in 4 facing catastrophic conditions.   It is estimated that UNRWA will run out of funds by the end of February if this funding is not resumed. 

It is a violation of international law to stop funding for UNRWA in light of the World Court provisional measures handed down the same day which call for ensuring “the provision of urgently needed humanitarian assistance to Palestinians of Gaza.”

As an organization with roots as a mutual aid society, we are particularly concerned about the inability for aid to reach those in Gaza who desperately need it.  We call on our representatives in Congress, on President Biden, and on Secretary Blinken to do everything in their power to prevent further untold suffering by restoring funding to UNRWA as is required by international law.

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