Employees of the UN refugee agency Palestinians (UNRWAfor its acronym in English) kidnapped Israelis, transported ammunition and the body of a dead soldier and participated in a deadly assault on a kibbutz during the October 7 Hamas terrorist attackas revealed in a report published this Sunday.
The details about the UN workers accused of helping Hamas during the massacre were broadcast by the newspaper The New York Times, which cited a report delivered to the United States government. The report led to UNRWA’s decision to dismiss 12 workers and have led to many countries to suspend their funding to the organization over the weekend.
The report says that a UNRWA school counselor from Khan Younis, in southern Gaza, is “accused of working with his son to kidnap a woman from Israel”.
“A social worker from Nuseirat, in central Gaza, is accused of helping carry the body of a dead Israeli soldier to Gaza, as well as distributing ammunition and coordinating vehicles on the day of the attack,” says the report cited by the newspaper. New Yorker.
A third employee was “described as participant in the kibbutz massacre in which 97 people died”apparently in Be’erione of the most devastated sites on October 7 in the Hamas-led attack.
The report adds the NYTdescribes the names, details and positions in UNRWA of the 12 workers, and maintains that 10 of the workers in question are members of the terrorist group Hamas, while one belongs to the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
To make the findings, Israeli intelligence relied on the tracking the phones of six of the peoplein it phone call tracking of others who supposedly spoke of their participation in the attack and the reading text messages received by three others in which they were ordered to report to assembly points before the assault, including one in which he was ordered to carry RPGs stored in his house.
According to the report, seven of the accused were teachers in UNRWA schools, and two worked in schools in different positions. The other three were described as a employeea social worker and a warehouse manager.
The most detailed allegations in the file concerned a high school counselor. Khan Younisin southern Gaza, accused of collaborating with his son to kidnap a woman in Israel.
Still Nuseirat social workerin central Gaza, is accused of helping bring the body of a dead Israeli soldier to Gazaas well as distributing ammunition and coordinating vehicles on the day of the attack.
According to the report, The United States could not verify the details or identities of the accused, but considers that the accusations are credible enough and worrying to order the cessation of financing.
He NYT wrote that until now had only been able to verify the identity of one of the accusedwhom he described as “a warehouse manager, whose social media profile lists him as a UNRWA employee and shows him wearing UN-branded clothing.”
On the other hand, the Channel 13 of Israel reported Sunday night that Two of the Israeli hostages freed from Gaza had testified that UNRWA workers were holding them separately, sometimes in their homes.
In one case, the hostage stated that the captor’s daughter had told them that he was a UNWRA professorwho had fed them snacks labeled and distributed by the UN agency, and who had moved them from place to place through UNWRA facilities to avoid detection when Israeli troops closed the siege.
It was not immediately clear if this was the same case detailed in the Times.
Asked about Israel’s accusations on Sunday, UNRWA said two of the 12 employees had diedbut could not provide further information while the UN Office of Internal Oversight Services continued to investigate.
On October 7, some 3,000 terrorists stormed across the border into Israel, invading military bases and communities and killing some 1,200 people, most of them civilians massacred in their homes and at a music festival. The attackers also took 253 hostages to Gaza, where about half remain.
The accusations are the latest in a long series of Israeli complaints against the UN agency, such as allowing anti-Israel incitement to be taught in its hundreds of schools and that some of its staff collaborate with Hamas. The administration trump suspended funding to the agency in 2018, but the US president, Joe Bidenrestored it.
The latest allegations prompted donors, including the United States, Germany, Britain, Italy, Australia and Finland, to announce that they had suspended further funding to the agency, and UNRWA said on Friday it had fired several employees over the allegations. specified.
Supporters of the agency say the accusations against it seek to downplay the longstanding refugee problem and called the funding cuts collective punishment. Last week, UNRWA Commissioner General, Philippe Lazzarini, said he would appoint an independent entity to investigate the allegations, both “what is true or false” and “what is politically motivated.” He also said the allegations were harming the agency’s already strained operations.
There are currently 58 designated refugee camps in which UNRWA operates, in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.