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April 30, 2018 9:12 am

Outing UNRWA: State Department Is Complicit in Weaponizing the UN Against Israel

avatar by Martin Sherman

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UNRWA Commissioner-General Pierre Krahenbuhl speaks during a news conference at a UN-run school in Gaza City, Jan. 22, 2018. Photo: Reuters / Suhaib Salem.

JNS.org – On April 18, 2018, 51 members of Congress signed a letter to President Trump requesting that he order the declassification of a document — that was classified “despite no apparent national security threat or known historical precedent for classifying such a report.

According to the members of Congress, “this classification was inappropriate and a deliberate attempt to conceal information from American taxpayers,” and they urged that “The report should be declassified without further delay.

The document in question is a 2015 State Department report that was written pursuant to a 2012 directive from Congress to account for how billions of US tax payer dollars allocated to UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency) — the entity charged with dealing with the “Palestinian refugees” — were being used … or, perhaps, abused.

Expressions of congressional misgivings as to both the intrinsic nature of UNRWA and to its aberrant behavior have emerged into the public discourse from time to time over the past decade.

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One of the first assertive attempts to address the perverse and pernicious role of UNRWA was a legislative initiative by Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL), designed to disperse the fog of uncertainty about just how many people were benefitting from US funding allocated for “Palestinian refugees” — and what criteria were used to determine who was — and who wasn’t — entitled to such benefits.

The rationale underlying the initiative was to determine how many Palestinians were designated “refugees” according to generally accepted criteria, and how many were so designated according to anomalous criteria applicable only to Palestinians.

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