Secretary of State Mike Pompeo listens as US President Donald Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting at the White House, Thursday, June 21, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
WASHINGTON — Seventy House Democrats on Monday urged the Trump administration to reinstate its humanitarian aid funding in Gaza, saying that it was necessary toward alleviating the crisis there.
The missive — supported by the left-wing Middle East advocacy group J Street — argued that the White House’s cuts to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNWRA) was exacerbating an already-deteriorating situation that poses long-term security risks to Israel.
“We urge you to immediately restore funding for humanitarian aid in Gaza because it plays a critical role in the larger US strategy to secure peace and stability in the region,” the lawmakers said.
In January, Washington announced it would withhold $65 million in assistance to the UN relief agency for Palestinians. The move came after Palestinians protested US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and move the US embassy there.