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Bush Threatens to Cut Off Aid to Palestinians

HeadlineJun 27, 2002

President Bush said Wednesday the US will cut off aid to the Palestinians if they fail to elect new leaders. A senior administration official took the warning a step further, saying that while the Palestinian people were free to re-elect Palestinian President Yassir Arafat, they should know that it would cost them significant aid. He said, “We respect democratic processes, but there are consequences.” The US does not give money directly to the Palestinians, but channels it through non-governmental organizations, the United Nations, and the World Bank. Meanwhile, the London Guardian is reporting British Prime Minister Tony Blair has had his first public row with Bush. In a joint press conference, Blair bluntly insisted that it’s up to the Palestinians to elect their own leaders. The New York Times tells a different story: in its version, Tony Blair became the first major ally to “come close to embracing Mr. Bush’s new approach to the Middle East.”

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