Biden admin sent tens of millions in COVID relief funds to group accused of harboring Hamas terrorists
- October 14, 2023
Andrew Mark Miller, Fox News
The Biden administration sent $33.7 million from the American Rescue Plan, a spending bill meant to combat COVID, to a Palestinian relief organization that has previously been accused of providing safe harbor to terrorists in Gaza and has been referred to as “effectively a branch of Hamas.”
Former President Donald Trump cut off UNRWA’s funding in 2018 in a move that was criticized by the Brookings Institution, which alleged that he was cutting off “life-saving” aid to impoverished Gaza residents.
That funding was reinstated by the Biden administration despite acknowledging concerns that there was a possibility Hamas could benefit from foreign aid.
A March 2021 internal State Department document that was obtained by the Washington Free Beacon earlier this year and verified by Fox News Digital shows officials privately communicating their concerns that a Biden administration plan to unfreeze over $360 million in U.S. funds for the Palestinian Authority could risk benefiting terror groups, a trade-off the officials argued was necessary for national security.
“We assess there is a high risk Hamas could potentially derive indirect, unintentional benefit from U.S. assistance to Gaza. There is less but still, some risk U.S. assistance would benefit other designated groups,” the State Department wrote in the document. “Notwithstanding this risk, State believes it is in our national security interest to provide assistance in the West Bank and Gaza to support the foreign policy objectives.”