(Daily Caller News Foundation) — A major United Nations (U.N.) agency responsible for humanitarian services for Palestinians fired several of its staff members for reportedly participating in the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks.
The UN Relief Works Agency (UNRWA) fired a number of its employees for their alleged involvement in the Hamas Oct. 7 attacks against Israel that left 1,200 civilians dead, the agency announced on Friday. UNRWA members have previously been criticized for promoting antisemitism among the Palestinian population and allegedly having aid diverted to Hamas, according to the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.
“The Israeli Authorities have provided UNRWA with information about the alleged involvement of several UNRWA employees in the horrific attacks on Israel on 7 October,” UNRWA said in a statement on Friday. “To protect the Agency’s ability to deliver humanitarian assistance, I have taken the decision to immediately terminate the contracts of these staff members and launch an investigation in order to establish the truth without delay.”
“Any UNRWA employee who was involved in acts of terror will be held accountable, including through criminal prosecution,” UNRWA said. “These shocking allegations come as more than 2 million people in Gaza depend on lifesaving assistance that the Agency has been providing since the war began.”
UNRWA noted that it continues to condemn the Hamas Oct. 7 attacks. However, UNRWA does not share the opinion of the international community that Hamas is a terrorist organization, according to FDD.
UNRWA has also worked with and employed members of Hamas before, according to the Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center. Some of these members held senior positions in UNRWA.
U.S. intelligence has warned that humanitarian aid delivered to the Palestinian people through UNRWA has a high risk of being diverted to Hamas, as recently noted by the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Jan. 17. The Biden administration signed off in October on $100 million in aid to Gaza, despite the well-documented risks.
The State Department announced Friday that it “paused additional funding for UNRWA” while an investigation is pending.
“The United States is extremely troubled by the allegations that twelve UNRWA employees may have been involved in the October 7 Hamas terrorist attack on Israel,” the State Department said in a statement. “The Department of State has temporarily paused additional funding for UNRWA while we review these allegations and the steps the United Nations is taking to address them.”
UNRWA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.