"Israel's" Hadashot news channel on Thursday claimed in a report that "Israeli" Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been quietly urging the Trump administration not to cut funding to one of the primary sources of humanitarian aid for Palestinian refugees, despite threats from the US earlier this week if Palestinians refused to "come to the negotiation table."
"Behind the scenes, the prime minister is now in contact with the Americans in order to prevent the massive cut [in US funding for UNRWA] - to prevent it, you heard right," the report claimed, noting that while Netanyahu has offered his public support of the Trump administration, he did not want to set off an already dire humanitarian situation and cause further destabilization in the Gaza Strip.
The threat to cut funding came to light in an impromptu televised statement on Iran by US ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley Tuesday, revealing that US president Donald Trump was considering holding funds for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency.
According to Haley, Trump "doesn't want to give any additional funding until the Palestinians agree to come back to the negotiation table," referring to the so-called "peace" talks between the "Israeli" entity and the Palestinians that have come to a halt following Trump's hotly contested recognition of al-Quds [Jerusalem] as the entity's so-called capital last month.
The US is currently the agency's primary source of funding, giving over $300 million per year.
According to the television report, Netanyahu wants to "steer between the desire to publicly back Trump and to prevent a disaster in Gaza."
The foreign ministry is also reportedly opposed to the proposed cuts, but did not comment on the report.
Since Trump's December 6 declaration, Palestinians have fiercely protested the highly sensitive status of Jerusalem and declared that the US is no longer suitable to be an impartial mediator in any future "peace" talks with the entity.
Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team