The Trump administration is preparing executive orders that would clear the way for the United States to reduce ties with organizations that support the Palestinian Authority (PA) or Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), including the United Nations, officials said Wednesday, according to The New York Times.
The first of the two draft orders, titled “Auditing and Reducing U.S. Funding of International Organizations” and obtained by the newspaper, calls for terminating funding for any United Nations agency or other international body that meets any one of several criteria.
Those criteria include organizations that give full membership to the Palestinian Authority or Palestine Liberation Organization, or support programs that fund abortion or any activity that circumvents sanctions against Iran or North Korea.
The draft order also calls for terminating funding for any organization that “is controlled or substantially influenced by any state that sponsors terrorism” or is blamed for the persecution of marginalized groups or any other systematic violation of human rights, according to The New York Times.
The order calls for then enacting “at least a 40 percent overall decrease” in remaining United States funding toward international organizations.
The order establishes a committee that would recommend where those funding cuts should be made. It asks the committee to look specifically at United States funding for peacekeeping operations; the International Criminal Court; development aid to countries that “oppose important United States policies”; and the United Nations Population Fund, which oversees maternal and reproductive health programs.
If Trump signs the order and its provisions are carried out, the cuts could severely curtail the work of United Nations agencies, which rely on billions of dollars in annual United States contributions for missions that include caring for refugees, noted The New York Times.
The second executive order, “Moratorium on New Multilateral Treaties,” calls for a review of all current and pending treaties with more than one other nation. It asks for recommendations on which negotiations or treaties the United States should leave.
American lawmakers have increasingly criticized the UN over the last month, in the wake of the Security Council passing Resolution 2334, which condemned Israel’s presence in Judea, Samaria and eastern Jerusalem.
Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Ted Cruz (R-TX) recently introduced a law that would block taxpayer dollars from going toward the UN. The U.S. provides the UN with 22% of its funding.
A day after the UN resolution passed, Cruz had called on the United States to withhold funding to the global body until it reverses its decision. Similarly, Graham announced his intention to introduce the legislation shortly after the vote.
Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee suggested that the United States should pull its portion of the UN’s funding and allocate the funds to serve American veterans.
Trump himself criticized the UN following the passing of the anti-Israel resolution, saying the global body is “not living up to its potential” and asserting that the UN causes problems instead of solving them.