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Cablegate: Need to Press Congress for Usd 75 Million in Fy07

VZCZCXYZ0001
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHJM #4076 2511401
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 081401Z SEP 06
FM AMCONSUL JERUSALEM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4830
INFO RUEHTV/AMEMBASSY TEL AVIV IMMEDIATE 1992

UNCLAS JERUSALEM 004076

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

F FOR AMBASSADOR TOBIAS; NEA FRONT OFFICE, AND NEA/IPA; NSC
FOR ABRAMS/DORAN/WATERS; USAID FOR KUNDER/MCCLOUD/BORODIN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAID PREL KWBG
SUBJECT: NEED TO PRESS CONGRESS FOR USD 75 MILLION IN FY07
FOR WEST BANK/GAZA ESF


This is a joint message from Consul General Walles,
Ambassador Jones, and Acting USAID Mission Director Harden.

1. (SBU) We urge the Administration to approach Congress as
soon as possible to request full funding of the
Administration's FY 2007 request of USD 75 million for West
Bank/Gaza ESF. Even though we have ceased our support to the
PA government, the U.S. government has continued to support
the Palestinian people and their aspirations for a two-state
solution. To advance these goals, the Secretary approved a
new strategy in July focused on humanitarian assistance to
the Palestinian people, specifically in the areas of health,
education, and food relief, and support for the rule of law,
democratic reform, and private sector development. A drastic
decrease in FY 2007 funding to the level of USD 25 million or
even no funding, as proposed in the Senate and House,
respectively, would send a clear signal to the Palestinian
people that the USG is no longer supporting their
humanitarian needs and would also mean that the assistance
strategy approved by the Secretary cannot be fully
implemented. We know such a message to the Palestinian
people is not our intent and, therefore, urge you to reach
out to Congress and stress the importance of meeting the
Administration's full request of USD 75 million. At this
level, the USG will be able to honor its commitment to meet
basic human needs, support civil society, and build a more
robust private sector.

2. (SBU) A USD 50-75 million cut in assistance in FY 2007
will mean drastic cuts to the provision of U.S. humanitarian
assistance at a time when the Palestinian people depend on it
most. Such a substantial cut in assistance will also send a
message to other donors that the USG is disengaging, when the
USG should be at the vanguard of efforts to maintain the
international coalition in support of the Palestinian people
even as we hold the PA government responsible for meeting the
Quartet's three conditions. Should there be a political
change on the ground, a reduction in funding or no FY 2007
funding will greatly impede the U.S. government's ability to
respond quickly and restart those projects currently
suspended or to undertake new initiatives in support of new
political realities. Importantly, the U.S. government will
have no additional funding to implement the Agreement on
Movement and Access and pursue other USG objectives.

3. (SBU) Therefore, we urge the Department, the NSC, and
USAID to impress upon Congress the need to fully fund the
Administration's request of USD 75 million for West Bank/Gaza
ESF so that the USG can respond to the current humanitarian
needs of the Palestinian people and any future developments.
WALLES

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