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UNRWA Debate

February 12, 2024
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UNRWA Debate

Be it Resolved, western governments must resume funding to UNRWA

14 countries, including Canada and the US, suspended funding to the U.N.’s Palestinian Refugee Agency in response to Israeli allegations that 12 employees were involved in the attack on Israel on October 7th, and roughly 10% of their employees in Gaza have links to Hamas or Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Human rights workers argue that this is a form of collective punishment that will have dire consequences on a population already suffering from widespread hunger, displacement, and disease. Furthermore, cutting off payments to Palestinian refugees in the West Bank, Lebanon, and Syria could destabilize an already volatile region. UNRWA’s critics argue that by keeping Palestinians in a perpetual state of refugee status, the organization prevents them from setting down roots elsewhere in the region and thus acts as an obstacle to peace. Given the irrefutable evidence of its ties to Hamas and support of terror against Israel, they argue, there is no reason to continue to fund an agency openly committed to the right of return for Palestinian refugees and the elimination of the Jewish State.

Arguing in favour of the resolution is Kenneth Roth, the former Executive Director for Human Rights Watch

Arguing against the resolution is Einat (EY-nut) Wilf, she’s a former member of the Israeli Knesset and the author of The War of Return: How Western Indulgence of the Palestinian Dream Has Obstructed the Path to Peace

This could not come at a worse moment for UNRWA because even though these dozen employees are just a dozen out of 13,000 employees operating in Gaza, everybody is being penalized.”
-KENNETH ROTH

This is an organization that keeps the war going on forever. If you’re actually someone who wants to move forward, UNRWA must not only be defunded, it must totally be dismantled.”
-DR. EINAT WILF

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