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Key recommendations for strengthening the neutrality of the UN agency helping Palestinian refugees

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Key recommendations for strengthening the neutrality of the UN agency helping Palestinian refugees
News

News

Key recommendations for strengthening the neutrality of the UN agency helping Palestinian refugees

2024-04-23 06:40 Last Updated At:15:00

An independent panel that reviewed the neutrality of the U.N. agency helping Palestinian refugees, after Israel alleged that a dozen of its employees in Gaza had participated in Hamas' Oct. 7 attacks, released its report on Monday.

Here are some of its key recommendations to strengthen the neutrality of the agency, known as UNRWA.

— UNRWA, established by the U.N. General Assembly in 1949, does not have an executive board but it does have an advisory body, which must put neutrality on its agenda at all meetings and create a working group on neutrality and integrity issues.

— UNRWA faces challenges due to increased politicization of its staff and must announce procedures to deal with future allegations of neutrality breaches, and identify and implement additional ways to screen staff early in the recruitment process.

— UNRWA should reinforce its regular sharing of digital staff lists with host countries and Israel by ensuring the inclusion of additional information, including ID numbers and jobs. In response, host countries and Israel must provide UNRWA with results of their screening and “any red flags.”

— UNRWA’s international staff in Gaza is less than 1% of its total staff and there needs to be more senior international staff in the field to provide oversight on neutrality issues.

— UNRWA’s management and internal oversight reform efforts “are commendable and should be expanded,” including by creating a centralized neutrality investigation unit.

— UNRWA must implement “a zero-tolerance policy” on school textbooks used in its schools spreading antisemitic views or promoting discrimination and incitement to hatred.

— The politicization of UNRWA staff unions is “one of the most sensitive neutrality issues” and the agency should request an independent body to vet every staff union representative on their neutrality.

— It is “imperative” for UNRWA to enhance its engagement with donor nations to promote trust and strengthen their partnership.

— The international community has a responsibility to help and support UNRWA in addressing neutrality issues.

FILE - Palestinian children who fled with their parents from their houses in the Palestinian refugee camp of Ein el-Hilweh, gather in the backyard of an UNRWA school, in Sidon, Lebanon, Sept. 12, 2023. An independent review released Monday, April 22, 2024, of the neutrality of UNRWA, the U.N. agency helping Palestinian refugees, has found that Israel never expressed concern about anyone on the staff lists it has received annually since 2011. The review was carried out after Israel alleged that a dozen employees of the agency had participated in Hamas’ Oct. 7 attacks. (AP Photo/Mohammed Zaatari, File)

FILE - Palestinian children who fled with their parents from their houses in the Palestinian refugee camp of Ein el-Hilweh, gather in the backyard of an UNRWA school, in Sidon, Lebanon, Sept. 12, 2023. An independent review released Monday, April 22, 2024, of the neutrality of UNRWA, the U.N. agency helping Palestinian refugees, has found that Israel never expressed concern about anyone on the staff lists it has received annually since 2011. The review was carried out after Israel alleged that a dozen employees of the agency had participated in Hamas’ Oct. 7 attacks. (AP Photo/Mohammed Zaatari, File)

FILE - French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna speaks during a press conference in Beirut, Lebanon, Dec. 18, 2023. An independent review released Monday, April 22, 2023, of the neutrality of UNRWA, the U.N. agency helping Palestinian refugees, has found that Israel never expressed concern about anyone on the staff lists it has received annually since 2011. The review was carried out after Israel alleged that a dozen employees of the agency had participated in Hamas’ Oct. 7 attacks. The independent panel, led by Colonna, said UNRWA has "robust" procedures to uphold the U.N. principle of neutrality. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla, File)

FILE - French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna speaks during a press conference in Beirut, Lebanon, Dec. 18, 2023. An independent review released Monday, April 22, 2023, of the neutrality of UNRWA, the U.N. agency helping Palestinian refugees, has found that Israel never expressed concern about anyone on the staff lists it has received annually since 2011. The review was carried out after Israel alleged that a dozen employees of the agency had participated in Hamas’ Oct. 7 attacks. The independent panel, led by Colonna, said UNRWA has "robust" procedures to uphold the U.N. principle of neutrality. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla, File)

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Duran homers and steals home as Red Sox beat Rays 5-2

2024-05-22 10:26 Last Updated At:10:32

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Jarren Duran homered and stole home as the Boston Red Sox beat the Tampa Bay Rays 5-2 on Tuesday night.

Duran scored to make it 4-2 during a double steal with Rafael Devers in a go-ahead, two-run eighth against Jason Adam (2-1). Duran headed home after Rays catcher Ben Rortvedt tried to throw Devers out at second and beat a return throw to the plate with a head-first slide.

“Stealing home to get us an extra run is always awesome,” Duran said.

Devers had his team record of homering in six consecutive games end. Only nine players have gone deep in seven straight games. Ken Griffey Jr. (1993), Don Mattingly (1987) and Dale Long (1956) share the longest streak with eight.

“It was great run there,” Boston manager Alex Cora said, “It's amazing.”

Devers singled in three at-bats for an 11-game hitting streak, He was intentionally walked in the decisive eighth that saw Wilyer Abreu hit a tiebreaking single earlier in the inning.. It was Devers' first stolen base this season,

“It makes me happy to help the team win,” Devers said through a translator.

Rays manager Kevin Cash called the double steal a “good play by them.”

By winning the first two games of a three-game set, the Red Sox won their first road series against the Rays since July 22-24, 2019. Boston moved back over .500 at 25-24.

The Rays have dropped a season high-tying three straight games and fell to 25-25.

Duran homered leading off the sixth off Rays starter Zack Littell to tie it at 2. Reese McGuire had a solo drive in the ninth.

“With the new rules and everything, he’s the perfect player for this environment,” Cora said of Duran. “He can run, he can hit it out of the ballpark. He’s a good defender.”

Tampa Bay has allowed a major league-leading 41 homers at home.

Greg Weissert (2-1) struck out two in a perfect seventh and Kenley Jansen worked the ninth to get his 14th save in 17 chances..

Isaac Paredes put the Rays up 2-0 on a two-run single against Cooper Criswell in the first. Boston got within 2-1 on a second-inning RBI single by Vaughn Grissom.

Littell gave up two runs and three hits over 5 2/3 innings. Criswell allowed two runs and six hits in 5 1/3 innings.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Red Sox: Cora said reliever Liam Hendriks (Tommy John surgery) is “trending in the right direction” and remains optimistic the right-hander will be back this season. … DH Masataka Yoshida (strained left thumb) is getting treatment and “improving but not there yet to do baseball activities,” according to Cora. … 1B Triston Casas (strained left ribs) has added throwing to his workout program.

Rays: SS Taylor Walls, out all season following right hip surgery, went 0 for 2 and played five innings of defense in his first game with the rookie-level FCL Rays.

UP NEXT

Rays RHP Ryan Pepiot (3-2, 3.68 ERA) will make his first start Wednesday night since getting hit in the lower left leg by an 107.5 mph liner by the New York Mets’ Starling Marte on May 5. RHP Brayan Bello (4-2, 3.96 ERA) will be the Boston starter.

AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB

Boston Red Sox's Jarren Duran celebrates his solo home run off Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Zack Littell with third base coach Kyle Hudson (84) during the sixth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox's Jarren Duran celebrates his solo home run off Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Zack Littell with third base coach Kyle Hudson (84) during the sixth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox's Jarren Duran (16) steals home plate ahead of the throw to Tampa Bay Rays catcher Ben Rortvedt during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox's Jarren Duran (16) steals home plate ahead of the throw to Tampa Bay Rays catcher Ben Rortvedt during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox's Jarren Dura reacts after steal home plate against the Tampa Bay Rays during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox's Jarren Dura reacts after steal home plate against the Tampa Bay Rays during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox's Ceddanne Rafaela, left, scores behind Tampa Bay Rays catcher Ben Rortvedt on an RBI single by Wilyer Abreu during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox's Ceddanne Rafaela, left, scores behind Tampa Bay Rays catcher Ben Rortvedt on an RBI single by Wilyer Abreu during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox's Wilyer Abreu hits an RBI single off Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Jason Adam during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. Boston's Ceddanne Rafaela scored on the play. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox's Wilyer Abreu hits an RBI single off Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Jason Adam during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. Boston's Ceddanne Rafaela scored on the play. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers fields a ground ball by Tampa Bay Rays' Amed Rosario and gets the force play on Isaac Paredes during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers fields a ground ball by Tampa Bay Rays' Amed Rosario and gets the force play on Isaac Paredes during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Tampa Bay Rays' Randy Arozarena, right, celebrates his double off Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Cooper Criswell during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. Looking on is Boston Red Sox second baseman Vaughn Grissom. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Tampa Bay Rays' Randy Arozarena, right, celebrates his double off Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Cooper Criswell during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. Looking on is Boston Red Sox second baseman Vaughn Grissom. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Cooper Criswell delivers to the Tampa Bay Rays during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Cooper Criswell delivers to the Tampa Bay Rays during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Zack Littell delivers to the Boston Red Sox during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Zack Littell delivers to the Boston Red Sox during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Tampa Bay Rays' Randy Arozarena (56) scores ahead of the throw to Boston Red Sox catcher Reese McGuire on a two-run single by Isaac Paredes during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. looking on is home plate umpire Vic Carapazza. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Tampa Bay Rays' Randy Arozarena (56) scores ahead of the throw to Boston Red Sox catcher Reese McGuire on a two-run single by Isaac Paredes during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, May 21, 2024, in St. Petersburg, Fla. looking on is home plate umpire Vic Carapazza. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

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