January 16, 2018 / 8:21 PM / 9 months ago

Decision to withhold U.N. funds not aimed at punishing Palestinians - U.S. official

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. decision to withhold half of the aid it provides to Palestinians through the U.N. Relief and Works Agency was not aimed at punishing anyone but was due to a U.S. desire to see reforms at the agency, the State Department said on Tuesday.

“This is not aimed at punishing” anyone, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert told a briefing. A U.S. official said earlier Tuesday the United States had decided to provide $60 million (£43.6 million) in aid for Palestinians to UNRWA but would withhold $65 million “for future consideration.”

Reporting by Arshad Mohammed; Writing by David Alexander; Editing by Eric Walsh

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