Donors step up funds to Palestinian aid agency after US…

GENEVA – The top official with the U.N.’s Palestinian aid agency says countries including Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and India have stepped up in recent months with a “very high amount” of $238 million in extra funding amid U.S. cuts.

UNRWA Commissioner Pierre Kraehenbuehl reiterated his disappointment with the Trump administration’s announcement last week that it’s cutting all funding for the agency, after partial cuts announced earlier this year.

Despite the new contributions, Krahenbuehl told reporters by phone Tuesday that the funding situation remains “critical,” and over $200 million is needed this year to “sustain our operations.”

The new commitments, including from Turkey and some other European countries, came after the U.S. announced plans in January to contribute $60 million this year, down from $360 million a year ago.

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