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You are here News Human Rights Israel’s attempt to destroy Unrwa is part of its starvation strategy in Gaza: Kenneth Roth

Israel’s attempt to destroy Unrwa is part of its starvation strategy in Gaza: Kenneth Roth

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Tarving Palestinianssrael’s vendetta against the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (Unrwa) illustrates the callousness with which Benjamin Netanyahu’s far-right government has fought the war in Gaza. It also reflects an effort to use Hamas’s 7 October attack as an opportunity for demographic re-engineering.

Unrwa established by the UN general assembly in December 1949 to address the 700,000 Palestinian refugees whom Israeli troops had forced from their homes during the war that led to the creation of the state of Israel in May 1948. Palestinians refer to this expulsion as the nakba, or catastrophe. Today, Unrwa provides education, healthcare and social services to the surviving refugees and their descendants. They number nearly 7 million, scattered among Jordan, Lebanon and Syria as well as the occupied West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza.

In January 2024, the Israeli government alleged that 12 members of Unrwa’s staff had taken part in the 7 October attack. Although Israel has been slow to provide evidence, Unrwa immediately dismissed 10 of the 12 (the other two were said to be dead) and vowed to hold accountable anyone implicated in the attack. The UN also launched an investigation. These steps are exactly what a responsible agency should take.

TVNL Comment: This story has disappeared from American media,  Ths US is directly complicitt by stopping aid to Unrwa in the spending bill.

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