UNRWA asked by Israel to fire 100 employees working as terrorist operatives: letter

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Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) is employing 100 terrorist operatives and directly asked the organization to terminate the staffers immediately.

In the July 4 letter, which was obtained by Fox News Digital, Ambassador Amir Weissbrod wrote that the presence of Hamas terrorists in UNRWA has been a “recurring concern” for Israeli officials.

“However, the full scope of this unprecedented infiltration was unknown and became clear only after the October 7th terrorist attack on Israel, in which, as you know, UNRWA employees actively participated,” Weissbrod said.

“In recent months Israel has discovered that hundreds of terrorists, members of Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) have been employed by UNRWA in the Gaza Strip, some of them holding high-ranking positions in UNRWA or in Hamas.”


Split images of UNRWA headquarters

The Israeli government recently provided UNRWA with names of employees working as terrorists within the organization. (Getty Images)

The ambassador added that the intent of his letter was to share “some additional information on this matter,” and proceeded to identify the employees associated with Hamas.

“Please find attached a document containing 100 names and IDs of terrorist operatives who are currently employed by UNRWA-Gaza,” Weissbrod wrote. “This list includes their military IDs as well.”

The official added that the list contains a “small fraction” of terrorist operatives employed by UNRWA, and that the names of more employees will be sent in the future.

“Israel expects from you and your organization to immediately terminate the employment of any member of Hamas or PIJ…their work in UNRWA poses a security risk for Israel, and represents a breach of the principle of neutrality as was mentioned in Ms. Colonna’s report,” Weissbrod added.


Hamas terrorists in Gaza

Hamas terrorists are seen during a military show in the Bani Suheila district on July 20, 2017 in Gaza City, Gaza. (Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

“This list will also be provided to major UNRWA donors.”

The Israeli government has repeatedly released photographs, video and documents proving that Hamas terrorists have worked within the UNRWA, and the agency has previously accepted the authenticity of the information. In January, UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini announced that he had fired UNRWA staff members that were involved in the Oct. 7 attacks.

“To protect the Agency’s ability to deliver humanitarian assistance, I have taken the decision to immediately terminate the contracts of these staff members and launch an investigation in order to establish the truth without delay,” he said. “Any UNRWA employee who was involved in acts of terror will be held accountable, including through criminal prosecution,” he said at the time.

Split image of a United Nations flag over United Nations builing, the back of a woman being taken by Hamas

United Nations headquarters and flag juxtaposed with a picture of an Israeli woman kidnapped by Hamas terrorists. (Getty Images/Hamas-Telegram)

However, Lazzarini has also recently pushed back against Israeli criticism of his organization. During a meeting at the U.N. in Geneva, he said that the UNRWA was “staggering under the weight of relentless attacks.”

“Israel has long been critical of the agency’s mandate. But it now seeks to end UNRWA’s operations, dismissing the agency’s status as a United Nations entity supported by an overwhelming majority of member states,” he said. “If we do not push back, other U.N. entities and international organizations will be next, further undermining our multilateral system.”


Fox News Digital reached out to UNRWA for a statement but did not immediately hear back.


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