US State Department Arabic Spokesperson Resigns Over Biden’s Gaza Policy

US State Department Arabic Spokesperson Resigns Over Biden’s Gaza Policy

This the third senior level resignation from the department over Gaza war policy since the war began.

Via Middle East Eye as posted by ZeroHedge

The Arabic language spokesperson of the US State Department has resigned over Washington’s Gaza war policy, in the third senior level resignation from the department since the war began.

Hala Rharrit, a Palestinian-American, posted her resignation on the LinkedIn social media site, stating: “I resigned April 2024 after 18 years of distinguished service in opposition to the United States’ Gaza policy.”

Hala Rharrit, Arabic language spokesperson for the State Department, has quit in protest. Image: State Dept.
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Rharrit, who joined the State Department as a political and human rights officer, was also the department’s Dubai regional media hub deputy director.

When asked about the resignation, a State Department spokesperson told Reuters on Thursday that the department has channels for its staff to share views when they disagree with government policies.

In late March, Annelle Sheline, a foreign affairs officer in the State Department’s human rights bureau, stepped down in protest over the Biden administration’s support for Israel, saying it had made her job promoting human rights “almost impossible”.

Earlier, veteran State Department official Josh Paul, a former director overseeing US arms transfers, resigned over Biden’s “destructive, unjust” supply of arms to Israel just days after the war on Gaza began.

In January, a senior Palestinian-American official in the US Education Department, Tariq Habash, resigned from his post, saying he could no longer “stay silent as this administration turns a blind eye to the atrocities committed against innocent Palestinian lives.”

Despite mounting international criticism of Israel’s offensive that has reportedly killed more than 34,300 people and flattened swathes of Gaza, the Biden administration has continued to provide its ally with a steady stream of weapons. Last week, the Wall Street Journal reported that the White House was eyeing an additional $1bn weapons deal with Israel.

On Wednesday, the US Senate joined the House of Representatives in passing an aid bill that will provide $26bn in aid for Israel and Palestine, with $4bn set to replenish Israel’s missile defense system and roughly $9bn slated for humanitarian assistance to Palestinians in Gaza.

There have been reports of internal dissent within the Biden administration as the death toll in Gaza continues to mount. In November, more than 1,000 officials at USAID, the State Department’s international aid organisation, signed an open letter calling for an immediate ceasefire. Cables criticizing the administration’s policy have also been filed with the State Department’s internal “dissent channel”.

The war has also sparked widespread anti-war demonstrations across the United States, with protests in recent weeks escalating across US universities. Student-led protests have seen encampments set up on major campuses demanding divestment from companies involved in Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land and “genocide” in Gaza.

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(TLB) published this article Via Middle East Eye as posted by ZeroHedge

Header featured image (edited) credit: Biden/BBC Screen shot

Emphasis added by (TLB)

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