New Int’l Aid Scandal: UN Employee Helped Hamas in Gaza

YERUSHALAYIM -
A Palestinian boy looks out of the window of his family's apartment at a Japan-funded housing project executed by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip August 9, 2016. REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa
A Palestinian boy looks out of the window of his family’s apartment at a Japan-funded housing project executed by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday. (Reuters/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa)

After arresting a top official of humanitarian missionary group World Vision for funneling millions of dollars to Hamas, the Shin Bet and security forces announced Tuesday that they have arrested a U.N. employee for assisting Hamas. Thirty-eight-year old Wahid Abdullah Boresh, a resident of Jebalya in Gaza, helped build military installations for Hamas, and helped Hamas leaders build mansions for themselves. Boresh was arrested in mid-July, and indicted for fraud and aiding a terror group in a Be’er Sheva court Tuesday.

Boresh was an employee of the United Nations Development Program, which funds construction and infrastructure programs in developing countries around the world. Active in Hamas for years, Boresh said under interrogation that he was instructed by Hamas to concentrate on his UNDP job in order to provide services for Hamas. In 2015, for example, he directed a UNDP project to build an anchorage marina for the use of Hamas terrorists. That same year, he directed UNDP resources to rebuild neighborhoods of Gaza City where top Hamas terrorists lived, funneling money that was to be used to revive poor areas of Gaza into the areas where his Hamas masters said the money should be sent.

Hamas had hidden weapons in many homes and businesses in Gaza, and in the wake of Operation Protective Edge, many of those buildings were damaged. As part of his UNDP work, Boresh was in charge of reconstruction crews that were clearing away debris – and when weapons were discovered, he alerted Hamas, instead of U.N. officials who, under the UNDP charter, were supposed to remove and destroy the weapons.

Shin Bet officials said that the incident, like the case of Muhammad El-Halabi of World Vision, who was arrested recently as well, shows how Hamas takes advantage of the generous international aid provided to Gaza to advance its military efforts to kill Israelis.

In a statement, the Foreign Ministry said that it had forwarded details of Boresh’s activities to U.N. officials, and to the heads of the UNDP. “We expect the U.N., and especially the UNDP, to condemn unconditionally the activities of their employee, who took advantage of international aid, diverting it from the truly needy to the coffers of Hamas terrorists.”

In the World Vision case, officials said that Halabi, an employee of World Vision, used money raised by the organization to build terror tunnels and weapons factories, used by Hamas to develop weapons and attack Israeli civilians. Halabi siphoned off nearly $10 million to fund Hamas terror projects, and ferried physical aid – food, blankets, tents, and much more – from the residents of Gaza for whom they were intended, providing them to members of his al-Aqsa gang. He also ordered thousands of tons of steel and building materials for “humanitarian” purposes, providing them to Hamas for terror activities.