Shalom Life | August 05, 2015

Israeli Official Says UN Handed Rockets Back to Hamas

After twenty rockets were found underneath an UNRWA school, the UN says it gave the missiles back to "local authorities"

By: Daniel Koren

Published: July 21st, 2014 in News » World

Israeli Official Says UN Handed Rockets Back to Hamas

On July 16th, a day before Israel officially began its ground invasion of Gaza in an effort to locate and destroy smuggling tunnels, a UN agency located twenty rockets hidden underneath a UNRWA (The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East) school.

“Immediately after discovery, the Agency informed the relevant parties and successfully took all necessary measures for the removal of the objects in order to preserve the safety and security of the school. UNRWA has launched a comprehensive investigation into the circumstances surrounding this incident,” said the agency in an official statement released the next day.

As it turns out, however, a senior Israeli official has claimed, in an interview with the Times of Israel, that after the rockets were confiscated, they were handed right back to "local authorities" in Gaza.

Which is, basically, Hamas.

“The rockets were passed on to the government authorities in Gaza, which is Hamas. In other words, UNRWA handed to Hamas rockets that could well be shot at Israel,” the official said.

Furthermore, the rockets may have never even been confiscated to begin with, as Israel has requested photos of the weapons, and the UN has refused to comply.

“According to longstanding UN practice in UN humanitarian operations worldwide, incidents involving unexploded ordnance that could endanger beneficiaries and staff are referred to the local authorities,” said the UNRWA's Christopher Gunness, director of advocacy and strategic communications.

“Immediately after the discovery of the rockets, UNRWA proactively informed the relevant parties and successfully took all necessary measures for the removal of the objects in order to preserve the safety and security of the school. Local authorities fall under the government of national consensus in Ramallah. They pledged to pass a message to all parties not to violate UNRWA neutrality,” he added.

A Western diplomat familiar with the situation has argued that there is "absolutely no evidence" that the UNRWA handed the rockets back to Hamas, and that it was most likely handed back to the unity government (the official ruling party in Gaza), though Hamas is still technically a part of said government.

Evelyn Gordon, of Commentary Magazine, wrote "A U.N. agency funded almost entirely by American and European taxpayers handed rockets over to a terrorist organization that is shooting them at Israel."

Israeli daily Ma'ariv reports that Israel will raise this issue with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon during his visit to Israel on Tuesday.

Jewish Groups Refuse Air France's Apology for Excluding Israel from Map Jewish Groups Refuse Air France's Apology for Excluding Israel from Map TrendingAnti-Semitic Twitter Troll Ordered to Pay Compensation Anti-Semitic Twitter Troll Ordered to Pay Compensation TrendingPharrell Williams to be Protested by BDS Activists in South Africa Pharrell Williams to be Protested by BDS Activists in South Africa Trending
 

Islamic Rock Star Banned from Iran after Playing Israel Show

August 05, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
Islamic Rock Star Banned from Iran after Playing Israel Show

Traveling to Israel is a crime in Iran, with a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison

Read More

Jewish Groups Refuse Air France's Apology for Excluding Israel from Map

August 05, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
Jewish Groups Refuse Air France's Apology for Excluding Israel from Map

Though the airline blames the omission on a technical glitch, many Jews want to see more action taken by the airline

Read More

Op-Ed: Rivlin is Diregarding Threats on his Life - Just like Rabin

August 05, 2015 | By Eitan Haber
Op-Ed: Rivlin is Diregarding Threats on his Life - Just like Rabin

It takes only one crazy Jew out of eight million Israeli citizens to hurt and kill or injure, slain prime minister's bureau chief tells President Reuven Rivlin

Read More

2,000-Year-Old Mikveh Discovered in Jerusalem

August 05, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
2,000-Year-Old Mikveh Discovered in Jerusalem

Archaeologists find mikveh featuring drawings on its walls in an underground cave

Read More

'Birthright Excel' a Success for 5th Year in a Row

August 05, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
'Birthright Excel' a Success for 5th Year in a Row

The Excel program pairs students with Israeli businesses in the business and technology sectors

Read More

Israel Set to Launch Designer Store in Hong Kong

August 05, 2015 | By JNS.org
Israel Set to Launch Designer Store in Hong Kong

The store will promote the "Made in Israel" brand and help fashion designers break into the Far East market

Read More

Empowering Haredim and Uniting Israel Through Technology Education

August 05, 2015 | By Avi Rosenfeld
Empowering Haredim and Uniting Israel Through Technology Education

We need to ensure that Orthodox Jews who wanted to break the cycle of poverty have the resources to do so

Read More

The Top Ten Tel Aviv Restaurants

August 05, 2015 | By Noam Matas
The Top Ten Tel Aviv Restaurants

With over 4,500 restaurants, it is clear that Tel Aviv takes food seriously: here's some of our favorites

Read More

More Headlines