The Trump administration will not be sending U.S. coronavirus assistance to the Gaza Strip due to concerns that funds could fall into the hands of the U.S.-designated terrorist group Hamas.

“The Trump administration is not supporting assistance to Gaza,” a senior administration official with knowledge of the decision told The New York Post. “There is a Hamas government in Gaza. They have indicated no interest in engaging with us, no interest in peace with Israel, and in fact, they continue—despite having coronavirus cases in Gaza—to fire rockets at the Israelis on a regular basis.”

U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman announced on April 16 that the United States would give $5 million to the Palestinians to help them deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

“I’m very pleased the USA is providing $5M for Palestinian hospitals and households to meet immediate, life-saving needs in combating COVID-19. The USA, as the world’s top humanitarian aid donor, is committed to assisting the Palestinian people, & others worldwide, in this crisis,” tweeted Friedman.

The relief would come from international-disaster assistance from the U.S. Agency for International Development, according to the U.S. State Department. The funds would go to Palestinians through a contractor in the West Bank.

The Trump administration has defunded almost all U.S. assistance to the Palestinians since the enactment of the Taylor Force Act in 2018 due to the Palestinian Authority’s “pay to slay” program of rewarding terrorists and their families.

Support Jewish Journalism
with 2020 Vision

One of the most intriguing stories of the sudden Coronavirus crisis is the role of the internet. With individuals forced into home quarantine, most are turning further online for information, education and social interaction.

JNS's influence and readership are growing exponentially, and our positioning sets us apart. Most Jewish media are advocating increasingly biased progressive political and social agendas. JNS is providing more and more readers with a welcome alternative and an ideological home.

During this crisis, JNS continues working overtime. We are being relied upon to tell the story of this crisis as it affects Israel and the global Jewish community, and explain the extraordinary political developments taking place in parallel.

Our ability to thrive in 2020 and beyond depends on the generosity of committed readers and supporters. Monthly donations in particular go a long way in helping us sustain our operations. We greatly appreciate any contributions you can make during these challenging times. We thank you for your ongoing support and wish you blessings for good health and peace of mind.