Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

Somalia twin bombings kill 18 in Mogadishu

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Arming the "good guys"?

Read more

THE DEBATE

Gun Control in the United States: Will the Florida shooting be the turning point?

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Giving a voice to the homeless in France

Read more

REPORTERS

'Never Again': The students pushing for US gun control

Read more

#TECH 24

A bright future for solar power

Read more

YOU ARE HERE

Winter in France's Burgundy vineyards

Read more

FOCUS

How French cyber police are patrolling the 'Dark Web'

Read more

ENCORE!

Marseille mon amour: Mediterranean city celebrates love

Read more

UN Palestinian agency sees 'most severe' crisis ever after US freeze

© AFP/File | The UN agency for Palestinian refugees, which runs hospitals, schools and summer camps like this one of a beach in Gaza City, says it faces its worst funding crisis ever after the United States froze tens of millions of dollars in contributions

RAMALLAH (PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES) (AFP) - 

The UN agency for Palestinian refugees faces its worst funding crisis ever after the United States froze tens of millions of dollars in contributions, its spokesman said on Wednesday.

"The US has announced it will contribute $60 million to the programme budget. There is for the moment no other indication of possible funding," UNRWA spokesman Chris Gunness told AFP.

"This dramatically reduced contribution results in the most severe funding crisis in the history of the agency."?

The United States held back $65 million that had been destined for UNRWA on Tuesday, two weeks after President Donald Trump threatened future payments.

The State Department said $60 million of what had been a planned $125 million package would go through to keep the agency running, but the rest will be withheld for now.

UNRWA said the $60 million would keep schools and hospitals open for the time being, but noted that it was dramatically less than the $350 million Washington paid during 2017.

State Department officials insisted the decision was taken not to pressure Palestinian leaders but to encourage other countries to help pay for and reform UNRWA.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called for UNRWA to be shut down althogether.

© 2018 AFP