TEL AVIV, Israel — An Israeli document obtained Monday spelled out allegations against a dozen U.N. employees the country says participated in Hamas' Oct. 7 assault — claiming seven stormed into Israeli territory, including two who participated in kidnappings.
The allegations against staffers with the U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees prompted Western countries to freeze funds vital for the body, which is a lifeline for desperate Palestinians in Gaza. The U.N. fired nine of the 12 accused workers and condemned “the abhorrent alleged acts” of staff members.
The accusations come after years of tensions between Israel and the agency known as UNRWA over its work in Gaza, where it employs roughly 13,000 people.
Despite the humanitarian catastrophe unfolding in the besieged territory — where Israel's war against Hamas has displaced the vast majority of the population and officials say a quarter of Palestinians are starving — major donors, including the U.S. and Britain, have cut funding. On Monday, Japan and Austria joined them in pausing assistance.
With the majority of its budget in doubt, UNRWA says it will be forced to halt operations within weeks if funding isn't restored.
The threat to the U.N. agency came as Israel said cease-fire talks held Sunday were constructive but that “significant gaps” remained in any potential agreement. The talks are meant to bring about some respite to war-torn Gaza and secure the…