A U.S. congressman plans to introduce an amendment that would condition U.S. funding of UNRWA on an independent audit.
Rep. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), a member of the U.S. House of Representatives’ foreign operations subcommittee, wants to attach the amendment to the foreign operations bill due for consideration in coming weeks, his office said.
Kirk withheld the amendment last Friday, when the subcommittee referred the bill to the full Appropriations Committee, offering instead a statement of his concerns.
The amendment was unlikely to pass out of the subcommittee, but Kirk may introduce it when the bill is considered by the full committee or by the full House.
The amendment also exists as a separate bill under consideration by the subcommittee.
Kirk says the U.N. Relief and Works Agency, the main body responsible for Palestinian refugees, is overstaffed, has not had an independent audit in years and does not rigorously seek to ensure that staff members don’t affiliate with terrorist groups.
UNRWA says an independent audit by the South African government’s comptroller is near completion and claims that any staffers must quit before joining political groups…