When President Trump signed the Anti-Terrorism Clarification Act (ATCA) in October 2018, legal experts warned that it would effectively terminate all U.S. humanitarian aid to the Palestinian territories, putting the lives of the most vulnerable Palestinians at risk and jeopardizing regional security. The Palestinian Authorities' announcement in January that the new conditions imposed by the ATCA made them unable to accept U.S. humanitarian aid confirms these dire predictions.
The Anti-Terrorism Clarification Act was intended to assist the families of terrorist attack victims collect damages from foreign governments, but the strings it attaches to U.S. humanitarian aid make it impossible for the Palestinian Authority to accept any aid. This not only includes economic assistance but also funding for programs that combat drug trafficking, weapons proliferation, and--ironically--international terrorism. ATCA further undermines an already dire economic situation and prevents relief organizations from providing much needed assistance.
Call on your members of congress to ensure a resumption of vital U.S. humanitarian assistance to Palestine by amending the ATCA.
The ATCA is only the latest attempt by the Trump Administration to use humanitarian aid for political leverage. In 2018, the U.S. suspended all funding for the United Nation Relief and Works Agency that assists Palestinian refugees. In addition, the Trump Administration reprogrammed Fiscal Year 2017 economic assistance that goes toward funding NGOs in their work in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. The President hopes that these cuts will force the Palestinian Authority to agree to resume peace negotiations on his terms.