Spain to give UNRWA extra 20 million euros, says foreign minister

Spain will send the United Nations’ Palestinian refugee agency UNRWA an additional 20 million euros ($21.9 million) in aid, Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Albares says.

This will be on top of the 3.5 million euros ($3.8 million) the country has already pledged in February.

Spain was not among the donor countries that have frozen funding to the UN agency amid evidence and documentation provided by Israel that some of its staff participated directly in the Hamas October 7 massacre and others have ties to terror operatives.

Last month, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant named 12 UNRWA staffers whom Israel found participated in the attack on October 7. The IDF said its intelligence shows that some 450 terror operatives in Gaza, mostly Hamas members, are also employed by UNRWA.

This week, the IDF released audio recordings that it says incriminate two additional UNRWA employees, one of whom tells a friend in Gaza that he captured a “sabaya,” a term used by Islamic State jihadists, which means sex slave.

Jerusalem has long argued that UNRWA should be disbanded, and the recent allegations have led several donor countries to announce funding freezes, increasing concerns that the agency, which says it is the main conduit for aid for millions in the Strip during the Israel-Hamas war, could stop operating in Gaza and elsewhere in the Middle East within weeks.

The head of UNRWA, Philippe Lazzarini, warned on Monday in a letter to the General Assembly’s president that his agency is at a “breaking point,” as donors freeze funding, Israel exerts pressure to dismantle the agency and humanitarian needs soar.

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