Israel's Education Minister and head of the right-wing Jewish Home party, Naftali Bennett, slammed reports on Friday that the Foreign Ministry has called on America not to cut UN support for Palestinian refugees, Israeli media has reported. Earlier this week, Donald Trump warned that his country would cut aid for Palestinians who he believes receive millions of US dollars without respecting America.
According to Israeli Hadashot TV, though, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who also serves as Foreign Minister, is opposed to any cut in such aid. If the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) did not have the resources to provide essential services to Palestinian refugees, the burden would fall upon Israel as the occupying power, in the occupied West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza Strip, at least.
"UNRWA," claims, Bennett, "is a terror-supporting organisation. Its very existence perpetuates the dire situation of Gaza's population, who suffer under the rule of Hamas." He insisted that the US decision to cut aid is the right choice.
US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley has said that Washington is committed to reaching a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians. She pointed out that it would cut off aid if the Palestinians refused to go for talks. Following her comments, a US official told the Times of Israel: "We continue to review the impact and effectiveness of UNRWA's aid programmes. This is prudent, and, indeed, it is our duty to the American taxpayer."