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UN has allegations against employees investigated

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05.02.2024 19:23

Following the serious allegations against employees of the UN Palestinian Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), Secretary-General António Guterres has now announced an investigation. The committee, which is chaired by former French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna, is to assess the neutrality of the organization.

Three human rights organizations from Sweden, Norway and Denmark are working together on this. As reported , twelve UNRWA employees are suspected of being involved in the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7. Governments such as the Austrian, British, Japanese, Canadian and German have announced that they will stop their payments to the aid organization for the time being.

Report planned
The committee is now to determine "whether the agency is doing everything in its power to ensure its neutrality and to respond to serious cases of abuse, if any." An interim report should be available by the end of March and the final report by the end of April. This should include "recommendations for improving and strengthening" the existing mechanisms.

The new investigation is being carried out in parallel with an internal UN evaluation that was launched in January (see video above). Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said last week that the aid organization was completely "infiltrated" by Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip.

Humanitarian crisis
Around two million people live in the Gaza Strip. At least 27,478 residents are said to have been killed since the start of the war. Many people have been displaced and are living in catastrophic conditions. This was triggered by the attack on Israel by the terrorist organization Hamas on 7 October. Around 1160 people were killed and a further 250 were taken hostage in the Gaza Strip.

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