In what may be just the first in a series of aid freezes, the US has withheld $125 million for the UNRWA, an agency that provides services for Palestinian refugees. The money was to be sent on January 1, but never arrived.
This has led to a weird semantics argument by the State Department regarding whether or not this technically counts as a “freeze,” saying that just because the UNRWA was expecting money doesn’t mean it was ever actually going to get that money.
The unnamed State Department official who complained about the report said that there had been no formal decision to freeze the aid yet, and deliberations are ongoing within the Trump Administration, with a decision expected in the weeks to come.
With President Trump openly threatening aid cuts against the Palestinians and then aid to a Palestinian-related agency just not showing up, it’s hard not to see this as a cut, even if UNRWA officials conceded the administration hasn’t said anything to them about the matter.