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Warren, Van Hollen lead Senators in demanding Trump admin send aid to Palestine amid COVID-19 crisis

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A group of Senators has sent a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, urging the administration to supply Gaza and the West Bank with much-needed humanitarian aid. There are already are at least 50 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the West Bank and multiple individuals have tested positive for the virus in Gaza. Gaza has been under siege for years and the densely populated area is bracing for a potentially catastrophic situation. Trump has frozen nearly all aid to Palestine since January 2018.

“Given the spread of the coronavirus in the West Bank and Gaza, the extreme vulnerability of the health system in Gaza, and the continued withholding of U.S. aid to the Palestinian people, we are concerned that the Administration is failing to take every reasonable step to help combat this public health emergency in the Palestinian Territories,” reads the letter. It was lead by Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), but was also signed by  Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Tom Udall (D-NM), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Tom Carper (D-DE), and Sherrod Brown (D-OH).

“This is what leadership looks like,” tweeted Progress Up Consulting Senior Principal Josh Ruebner, “Senator Warren and 7 of her colleagues demand answers from Trump on what he is doing to restore US humanitarian aid to Palestinians to help them cope with COVID-19 under Israeli occupation and blockade.”

This week the progressive, Jewish organization IfNotNow announced that over 10,000 people had signed their petition demanding that Israel lift its blockade on Gaza in response to the crisis. “Palestinians in Gaza must now weather the Coronavirus in addition to the punishing, 15-year-long Israeli blockade of the coastal enclave,” said the group in a press release on the petition, “The international community must do everything it can to protect everyone in the world from this pandemic — and this must include the stateless Palestinians in Gaza, whose lives are controlled by the Israeli military. If there was ever a moment to realize that we are in this fight together, it is now.”

The group of Senators is requesting a response to their letter no later than April 6 and they’re asking for a detailed account of how the Trump administration is planning to assist the Palestinian people during this time.

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Kay24
Kay24

To lift the sanctions on Gaza, and even Iran, would be the most humane and decent thing to do. People are suffering and dying, and all because of the US, and Trump’s vindictive policies. Trump does not know what it is to be humane, just like Bibi Netanyahu. They have… Read more »

Misterioso
Misterioso

https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/nora-barrows-friedman/podcast-ep-16-gaza-physicians-brace-impact “Podcast Ep 16: Gaza physicians ‘brace for impact,’ Electronic Intifada, March 24, 2020 by Nora Barrows-Friedman “The first two cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, have been confirmed in the Gaza Strip. “Palestinians in the West Bank are on lockdown, compounded by the Israeli military… Read more »

JWalters
JWalters

Some welcome leadership in the inevitable process of freeing Americans as well as Palestinians from the grip of the bigoted ideology of Zionism.
“Israel’s Stranglehold on American Politics”
https://www.truthdig.com/articles/israels-stranglehold-on-american-politics/

Misterioso
Misterioso

https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(20)30730-3/fulltext “Structural violence in the era of a new pandemic: the case of the Gaza Strip” The Lancet, March 27, 2020 By David Mills, Bram Wispelwey, Rania Muhareb, Mads Gilbert “’Hope for improving health and quality of life of Palestinians will exist only once people recognise that the structural and… Read more »

Vera Gottlieb
Vera Gottlieb

This most certainly is NO TIME to play with peoples’ lives.