The diplomatic Quartet on the Middle East – made up of the United Nations, United States, European Union (EU) and Russian Federation – today issued a statement elaborating on an EU proposal for channeling aid directly to the Palestinian people and voiced hope that others will participate in it.
The “temporary international mechanism” would be limited in scope and duration and operate with full transparency and accountability, the Quartet said in a statement, pledging to review whether it is still needed after three months.
“The mechanism facilitates needs-based assistance directly to the Palestinian people, including essential equipment, supplies, and support for health services, support for the uninterrupted supply of fuel and utilities, and basic needs allowances to poor Palestinians.”
The statement voiced the Quartet’s hope that other donors, international organizations, and Israel would consider participation in the mechanism. “Donors are also encouraged to respond to humanitarian and other assistance requests by international organizations, especially UN agencies, active in the West Bank and Gaza,” the group noted.
The Quartet also reiterated its call for the Palestinian Authority Government to commit to the principles of nonviolence, recognition of Israel, and acceptance of previous agreements and obligations, including the Roadmap. “The Palestinian Authority government must fulfill its responsibilities with respect to basic human needs, including health services, as well as for proper fiscal management and provision of services,” the Quartet said.
The mechanism was discussed at a meeting of Quartet principals on 9 May, when they grappled with the problem of deteriorating conditions in the West Bank and Gaza as donors balked at funding a Hamas-led Palestinian Government that has yet to renounce violence.