Secretary of State Antony Blinken Announces Plan to Give Palestine about $40 Million in Aid
Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced plans this week to give about $40 million in aid to Palestine.
Blinken met with Israeli and Palestinian leaders earlier this week to help support a cease-fire agreed upon last week between the two countries.
"As I told the president, I'm here to underscore the commitment of the United States to rebuilding the relationship with the Palestinian Authority and the Palestinian people, a relationship built on mutual respect and also a shared conviction that Palestinians and Israelis alike deserve equal measures of security, freedom opportunity and dignity," he said, according to The Associated Press.
Blinken said none of the money will reach Hamas, the terrorist group in Gaza, and he also said he hopes the U.S. can help the countries create a "better environment."
He also announced that the U.S. would be reopening its Jerusalem consulate. Former President Donald Trump had reduced operations at the Jerusalem site after he moved the U.S. Embassy to El Aviv in 2018.
As for the funding, Biden's administration has already pledged about $360 million to the Palestinians, and Blinken announced $38.5 million in additional aid for the country, including $5.5 million in emergency assistance for Gaza.
"Additionally, working with Congress, the State Department and USAID intend to provide $75 million in additional development and economic assistance over the next year that will support relief and recovery in the West Bank and Gaza," Blinken said in a statement.
Before the cease-fire, the 11-day war killed more than 250 people.
"We know that to prevent a return to violence, we have to use the space created to address a larger set of underlying issues and challenges," he said. "And that begins with tackling the grave humanitarian situation in Gaza and starting to rebuild."
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said there will not be lasting peace until Palestinians recognize Israel as a "Jewish state."
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Alex Wong/Staff
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.