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Palestinians: US cuts will have dire effect on health care

September 9, 2018
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FILE - In this Feb. 26, 1994 file photo, a Palestinian resident of the West Bank town of Yatta, who was shot in the head and critically wounded by Israeli troops during clashes, is taken out of a CAT scan machine at East Jerusalem's Makassed Hospital. Bassem Abu Libdeh, the director of Makassed Hospital said Sunday, Sept. 9, 2018, that a U.S. decision to cut funding to hospitals serving the Palestinians will have a "severe effect." Abu Libdeh said that the U.S. covers 40 percent of costs in six east Jerusalem hospitals that provide care for Palestinians from the Israeli-occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip. (AP Photo/Jacqueline Arzt, File Photo)

RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) — The director of an east Jerusalem hospital said Sunday that a U.S. decision to cut funding to hospitals serving the Palestinians will have a “severe effect.”

Bassem Abu Libdeh, of the Makassed hospital, said the U.S. covers 40 percent of costs in six east Jerusalem hospitals that provide care for Palestinians from the Israeli-occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

The Trump administration announced the $25 million funding cut on Saturday, saying it would redirect the money toward “high-priority projects elsewhere.”

The U.S. has also cut funding to UNWRA, which serves Palestinian refugees and their millions of descendants across the region.

The moves have added to Palestinian mistrust of the U.S. as it prepares to unveil a peace plan.

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