Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
News

U.S. Gives $40 Million in Aid to Palestinians

The United States transferred $40 million in foreign assistance to the Palestinians.

Congressional lawmakers released the funds, which amount to 20 percent of the $187 million in foreign assistance from fiscal year 2011 that was held up by Congress in response to the Palestinians’ actions at the United Nations, The Associated Press reported.

The assistance that the U.S. is for humanitarian and economic purposes and not for security assistance.

The release of the 2011 funds comes after an omnibus 2012 appropriations package passed by Congress earlier this month included restrictions that would limit any assistance to the Palestinians if they continued with their efforts to achieve member status at the United Nations.

During yesterday’s State Department briefing, spokesperson Victoria Nuland emphasized that it was not in the interest of the United States to withhold assistance to the Palestinians.

“We don’t think it’s in U.S. national interest to keep this money frozen. So from that perspective, we’re gratified that 40 million has now been released,” Nuland said.

A senior Republican Hill staffer noted that this could be a good way to test the Palestinian Authority without putting U.S. taxpayers at too much risk.

The staffer said “this is a smart move by the appropriators to put [Mahmoud] Abbas to the test without risking too much taxpayer money. Now that we have built-in legal conditions tying future Palestinian aid to issues like statehood, UN agency membership and a unity government with Hamas, the Congress is making the first move for 2012 – releasing a little bit of money to the PA in good faith. If the Palestinians act responsibly and comply with US law, they’ll get another tranche. If they don’t, especially in these times of great austerity, the American people will understand if we turn the spigot back off.”

A message from our editor-in-chief Jodi Rudoren

We're building on 127 years of independent journalism to help you develop deeper connections to what it means to be Jewish today.

With so much at stake for the Jewish people right now — war, rising antisemitism, a high-stakes U.S. presidential election — American Jews depend on the Forward's perspective, integrity and courage.

—  Jodi Rudoren, Editor-in-Chief 

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.