UN seeks $540 million for Palestinian aid, mostly for Gaza

BEIT LAHIYA, Gaza Strip (AP) — The United Nations says about $540 million is needed for humanitarian relief in the Palestinian territories in 2018.

Jamie McGoldrick, the top U.N. humanitarian coordinator, said Wednesday that 75 percent of that sum is for Gaza, where “a man-made tragedy is unfolding daily.”

Gaza has been under an Israeli and Egyptian blockade since the Islamic militant group Hamas took over the territory in 2007. The closure along with Hamas’ conflicts with Israel and a bitter power struggle with the group’s bitter rival, the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank, has devastated the economy.

Half the sum is to support emergency projects by UNRWA, the main U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees, after Washington slashed its funding this year.

The rest is to fund food, water, health, sanitation, shelter and education projects.

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