Why is Israel targeting UNRWA?

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Why is Israel targeting UNRWA?. Several weeks after Hamassurprise attack on October 7, Kholood Mkhamer fled her neighbourhood as a result of Israel’s bombing campaign.

According to Israel’s orders, more than one million people were ordered to move from northern Gaza to the south, including Mkhamer, a UNRWA employee. UN officials feared that Mkhamer was committing a war crime by forcing a population to move, but Mkhamer just wanted to escape.

The death of her parents and siblings occurred shortly after her family relocated. A house in which the family was staying was shelled as Mkhamer, a medical secretary, worked in a clinic along the Egypt-Israel border.

Halima Loaz, an UNRWA nurse and former colleague of Mkhamer’s, said they were all martyred. A mother, a sister, and a brother.”

UNRWA is attacked

Several countries have cut funding for UNRWA, the agency Palestine-based Palestinians have relied on for seven decades for everything from vaccinations to education, including the United States, Canada, Australia, Britain, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Finland, Estonia, Japan, Austria and Romania.

A dozen employees of the agency were charged with involvement in the attacks on southern Israel on October 7 that left 1,139 dead and 240 abducted. As part of a series of measures aimed at preventing genocide in Gaza, UNRWA fired nine of its employees preemptively while it investigates the allegations. As part of a series of measures to prevent genocide in Gaza, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordered Israel to restore vital provisions and ramp up aid to the enclave.

Diana Buttu, an international law expert from Palestine, said that the allegations surfaced immediately after the ICJ ruling. “Its purpose is to undermine any efforts to hold Israel accountable or stop the genocide by diverting attention away from the ICJ ruling and to focus on UNRWA.”

A decision by major donors to reduce funding for UNRWA will only lead to further misery for Gazans, according to UNRWA Commissioner-General Philip Lazzarini.

2 million Gazans rely on our humanitarian operation for their survival. There was no need for this additional collective punishment for Palestinians in Gaza. We are all stained by this,” he said in a statement.

As of October 7, UNRWA has only suffered one more hit.

It is the most casualties for the UN since its founding in 1945 that Israel has killed 152 Palestinian employees of UNRWA in Gaza. Over 1 million displaced Palestinians in Gaza are sheltering in UNRWA hospitals and schools, which Israel deliberately attacks on a regular basis.

Israeli attacks on UNRWA facilities have killed 360 civilians since the beginning of the war, according to UNRWA. Analysts, Palestinian refugees, and rights groups said UNRWA’s attacks are emblematic of Israeli efforts to destroy the agency.

Refund rights

It was created after a catastrophe known as Nakba, or “catastrophe”, caused more than 700,000 Palestinians to be expelled from their homeland.

According to UN Resolution 194, the agency recognizes Palestinian refugees in Gaza, the West Bank, Syria, Lebanon and Jordan as refugees entitled to education, healthcare and other services.

UNRWA is responsible for the registration of approximately six million Palestinian refugees. Israel opposes their return. According to Shatha Abdulsamad, a legal and refugee expert with al-Shabaka, a Palestinian think tank, Israel has lobbied Western states to eliminate UNRWA in an effort to sabotage Palestinian refugees’ right to return.

UNRWA has an exceptional position to highlight Palestinian refugees’ plight. In addition, its elimination could contribute to undermining the collective right of return, which would facilitate and accelerate the liquidation of the Palestinian cause, she stated.

A cut to US funding for UNRWA by then-US President Donald Trump in 2018 prompted international criticism. While several allied countries have joined President Biden in pausing aid to the agency, Canada, Germany, Australia and the United Kingdom are not joining them.

The move has been endorsed by Israeli officials, including Foreign Minister Israel Katz, who tweeted: “We have warned for years that UNRWA perpetuates the refugee issue.”

According to Human Rights Watch director for Israel-Palestine Omar Shakir, the Israeli government doesn’t hide its motives.

UNRWA’s work has been undermined for years by a politicized effort. According to him, pro-Israeli groups have completely focused on UNRWA since they want to liquidate the issue of Palestinian rights or even their refugees’ basic status for the purpose of advancing their greater political agenda under the Trump administration.

UNRWA opposition campaign

According to Zaid Amali, a UNRWA card holder and a civil society activist in the West Bank, Israel wants to eliminate UNRWA to force Palestinians to migrate elsewhere out of desperation.

Al Jazeera quoted him as saying: “Targeting UNRWA is part of this overall strategy to displace more Palestinians [from their lands] so that illegal settlements can be built.”

As reported in Israeli media in December, the government conspired to “push” UNRWA out of Gaza after the war, including by making Hamas responsible for UNRWA’s activities.

Palestinians in Gaza have been uprooted from Gaza, according to far-right Israeli ministers speaking at a Jerusalem conference on January 28. Palestinians in Gaza have been urged to “voluntarily” migrate and Israel to re-establish illegal Jewish settlements in the enclave by Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir.

The International Court of Justice has declared that most Palestinians in Gaza cannot cross into Egypt, despite Israel’s violence, which may legally constitute genocide, despite the fact that most of them wish to flee. The United States has stated that it will not support any move that could result in Gaza’s people being permanently displaced.

UNRWA funding cuts could worsen hunger and disease in Gaza with Palestinians unwilling or unable to flee. There is a 577,000-strong hunger crisis in Gaza, according to a UN-backed report.

In suspending funds to UNRWA at such a crucial time, the global community is enabling Israel’s mass killing of Palestinians, Loaz said.

Quoted her as saying that everyone [in Gaza] will be killed. Famine will kill Gazans if they are not killed by Israeli bombing and shelling.”

From timenews, that news was provided.

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