US cutting of $20 million from Jerusalem hospitals an act of blackmail, says official

RAMALLAH, Member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Hanan Ashrawi, said on Saturday that the US’ decision to cut $20 million from occupied East Jerusalem hospitals was an act of political blackmail that goes against the norms of human decency and morality.

She said in a press statement, By cutting vital funds to hospitals in East Jerusalem, which include the Augusta Victoria Hospital and the St. John’s Ophthalmic Hospital, the United States administration is threatening to cause serious instability and grave harm to thousands of Palestinian patients and their families from across the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

This hurts the livelihood of thousands of workers in the Palestinian healthcare sector in the occupied city, Ashrawi continued.

With its recent disastrous and irresponsible decision-making and policies, including defunding UNRWA and redefining the status of Palestinian refugees, recognizing occupied Jerusalem as capital of Israel, and relocating the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem the US is undermining the global rule of law and its standing, credibility, security, and interests around the world.

Ashrawi added, Such spiteful and dangerous American moves will further enable Israel to persist with its systematic plans targeting occupied Jerusalem and the Palestinian people as a whole with full impunity.

The PLO member said the key to any proper solution lies in ending the military occupation and enabling the Palestinians to exercise sovereignty and control over their own land and resources. With this, we would be able to build a thriving economy without any foreign assistance.

She reiterated the call to all members of the international community to assume their legal and human responsibilities and exhibit the political will necessary to hold Israel to account before the requirements for a just peace and stability are destroyed indefinitely.

Source: Palestinian News and Info Agency