United States economic assistance for the Palestinians has averaged about $85 million per year since Israel and the PLO signed the 1993 Declaration of Principles. Congress wants to ensure that U.S. assistance is used for legitimate humanitarian projects and that no U.S. aid is diverted for military or terrorist use against Israel. United States Aid to the Palestinians provides a description of the aid program and tables with annual amounts for the Palestinians. The report will be updated as necessary. See also CRS Issue Brief IB92052, Palestinians and Middle East Peace: Issues for the United States, updated periodically.
* The United States has never provided aid to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).
* The United States has provided aid directly to the Palestinian Authority (PA) three times; $36 million in FY1994, $20 million in FY2003, and $20 million in FY2005.
* U.S. economic aid to the Palestinians has averaged about $85 million per year since 1993; there has been no military aid. (See Table 3, page 6.)
* The President has requested $150 million in FY2006 and an additional $200 million in FY2005 supplemental aid for the Palestinians.
* About 80% of U.S. aid to the Palestinians is channeled through contractors and 20% is channeled through private voluntary organizations, both groups selected and monitored by USAID.
* U.S. aid for the Palestinians has not been earmarked in appropriations bills since 1975.
U.S. Aid for the Palestinians
The United States began providing assistance for the Palestinians in 1950 with contributions to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the international body created to provide food, shelter, medical attention, and education for the Palestinian refugees from the 1948-1949 Arab-Israeli war. (See section on UNRWA below.) In 1975, with strong support from private voluntary organizations, the United States began to provide foreign assistance for Palestinian projects, primarily humanitarian (child care, medical clinics) or infrastructure (clean water, roads, schools). Since 1975, about 80% of U.S. aid funds for the Palestinians has gone …