Donald Trump cancels $25M in aid for Palestinians in East Jerusalem hospitals – National


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U.S. President Donald Trump has ordered that $25 million earmarked for the care of Palestinians in East Jerusalem hospitals be directed elsewhere as a part of a evaluate of help, a State Division official mentioned on Saturday.

Trump known as for a evaluate of U.S. help to the Palestinians earlier this 12 months to make sure that the funds have been being spent in accordance with nationwide pursuits and have been offering worth to taxpayers.

“Because of that evaluate, on the course of the President, we can be redirecting roughly $25 million initially deliberate for the East Jerusalem Hospital Community,” the State Division official mentioned. “These funds will go to high-priority tasks elsewhere.”

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The help reduce is the most recent in a lot of actions by the Trump administration which have alienated the Palestinians, together with the popularity of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and shifting the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv.

That transfer reversed longtime U.S. coverage and led Palestinian management to boycott Washington peace efforts led by Jared Kushner, Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law.

Final month, the Trump administration mentioned it could redirect $200 million in Palestinian financial assist funds for packages within the West Financial institution and Gaza.

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And on the finish of August, the Trump administration halted all funding to the United Nations Reduction and Works Company for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA), a choice that additional heightened tensions with the Palestinian management.

Palestinian refugees have reacted with dismay to the funding cuts, warning they’d result in extra poverty, anger and instability within the Center East.

An announcement from the Palestinian International Ministry mentioned the most recent help reduce was a part of a U.S. try “to liquidate the Palestinian trigger” and mentioned it could threaten the lives of hundreds of Palestinians and the livelihoods of hundreds of hospital staff.

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“This harmful and unjustified American escalation has crossed all crimson strains and is taken into account a direct aggression in opposition to the Palestinian individuals,” it mentioned.

On the gates of two of the East Jerusalem hospitals affected, medical employees have been conscious of the choice however refused to remark.

One of many facilities, Al Makassed Islamic Charitable Society Hospital, mentioned in assertion the U.S. help cuts come because the “hospital goes by a suffocating disaster because of the dearth of move of monetary help, and the piling up of money owed and funds held again by the Palestinian authorities.”

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It mentioned it had acquired 45 million shekels ($12.5 million) of the U.S. cash to deal with sufferers from the West Financial institution, Gaza and East Jerusalem. Within the assertion hospital CEO Dr. Bassam Abu Libdeh “questioned the justification behind mixing political points with medical and humanitarian points.”

The final spherical of U.S.-brokered Palestinian-Israeli peace talks collapsed in 2014.

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