10 June 2020
International Development Questions

James Cleverly answers MPs’ questions on his portfolio at the Department for International Development.

Palestinian Authority Funding

Andrew Percy (Brigg and Goole) (Con)

What steps she is taking to ensure that funding to the Palestinian Authority is used to support her Department's objectives in that region. [903056]

The Minister for the Middle East and North Africa (James Cleverly)

The UK remains determined to work for peace in the region, and that means supporting a stable Palestinian Authority that can deliver essential public services to Palestinians and act as an effective partner for peace with Israel. In 2018-19, UK support helped the Palestinian Authority provide education for 26,000 children, half of whom were girls, and deliver 3,000 more immunisations and 111,000 medical consultations. I recently announced £20 million in new funding to help Palestinian health workers battle the coronavirus on the frontline.

Andrew Percy

Happy 50th birthday, Mr Speaker. [Interruption.] I’ll definitely get called again.

There has been some excellent working between the Palestinian Authority and Israel in response to covid. However, an investigation has shown that groups funded by the OHCA—the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs—and the World Health Organisation have links to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, which is a proscribed terrorist organisation. Can the Minister assure me that no UK aid money has been channelled in that way?

James Cleverly

The UK has provided £840,000 to the WHO and UNICEF in response to covid-19. We maintain robust measures to ensure that aid is not diverted. We are determined to continue to play our responsible part in cross-Government approaches to support the Palestinian people and to work towards peace in the region.




Topical Questions

Stephen Timms (East Ham) (Lab)

In addition to dealing with the point made by my hon. Friend the Member for Cardiff South and Penarth (Stephen Doughty), will the Secretary of State urge the CDA to avoid investments that involve making, selling or utilising single-use plastic packaging? [903071]

The Minister for the Middle East and North Africa (James Cleverly)

I assure the right hon. Gentleman that all Departments are closely integrated in the work of humanitarian aid, economic development and improving our planet. The work of my right hon. Friend Lord Goldsmith means that we are fully integrated in ensuring that economic development is not done at the cost of the environment and the planet.