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US Expresses Frustration Toward Israel Over Challenges in Delivering Aid to Gaza

Gaza Aid Distribution Struggles (Credits: Asharq Al-Awsat)

The recent airstrike that killed a group of aid workers in Gaza underscores the challenges the United States faces in providing relief amidst an escalating humanitarian crisis, particularly following the cessation of American funding to the primary UN agency for Palestinians.

There are no indications that the Biden administration is considering conditioning military assistance to Israel as a consequence. However, Democrats, including President Biden, are increasingly holding Israel accountable for the difficulties surrounding aid distribution.

The attack is further straining U.S. support for Israel’s military actions, especially after the U.S. abstained from a UN Security Council resolution calling for a ceasefire.

President Biden (Credits: The Times of Israel)

President Biden stated late Tuesday, “Israel has not taken sufficient steps to protect aid workers attempting to deliver vital assistance to civilians… The United States has consistently urged Israel to coordinate their military operations against Hamas with humanitarian efforts to minimize civilian casualties.”

Following the deadly strike, the World Central Kitchen (WCK) announced the suspension of its operations, removing a crucial humanitarian entity that lawmakers hoped could fill the void left by the controversial UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA).

The U.S. decision to halt funding to UNRWA was prompted by allegations that 12 of its members were involved in Hamas’s October 7 attack. This move has been a source of concern for Democrats, who recognize the organization’s flaws but also acknowledge its vital role in providing aid.

Rep. Gregory Meeks (Credits: NBC News)

Rep. Gregory Meeks, the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, expressed concern about UNRWA’s funding suspension, highlighting the organization’s unique role in delivering aid worldwide.

The recent suspension of UNRWA funding has exacerbated the crisis, as evidenced by Israel’s move to isolate the organization from planning meetings, according to William Deere, director of the UNRWA Washington Representative Office.

Despite Congress suspending UNRWA funding for a year, Deere commended the administration’s efforts to encourage other nations to step in and fill the funding gap.

Meanwhile, Democrats are calling on Israel to do more to facilitate the unimpeded flow of humanitarian aid. With a majority of Americans expressing disapproval of Israel’s actions in Gaza, Democrats fear the impact of the escalating conflict on the party’s electoral prospects.

As a result of the airstrike that killed WCK aid workers, Rep. Rosa DeLauro and other Democrats have urged Israel to open additional crossings to allow immediate humanitarian aid delivery and improve coordination to ensure the safety of aid workers.

Sen. Chris Murphy echoed similar sentiments, emphasizing the urgent need for Israel to halt military operations in Gaza and facilitate increased humanitarian aid delivery.

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