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US Unveils $75 Million for Palestinian Economy

  • VOA News

FILE - Palestinian laborers work at a construction site in the new Palestinian town dubbed Rawabi or "The Hills", near the West Bank city of Ramallah, Oct. 27, 2013.

FILE - Palestinian laborers work at a construction site in the new Palestinian town dubbed Rawabi or "The Hills", near the West Bank city of Ramallah, Oct. 27, 2013.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry Wednesday announced $75 million in new aid to the Palestinians aimed at building roads, schools and health clinics.

Speaking at a ceremony in the West Bank city of Bethlehem, Kerry said boosting economic development will show both Israelis and Palestinians "that peace has the benefits of economic opportunity and prosperity and a better quality of life."

​The money adds to the $25 million pledged by the United States in September for West Bank infrastructure improvements.

In addition, Germany will put up $10 million towards about 200 projects being identified by the Palestinian Authority. The efforts are due to start within the next six months.

The United States sees the economic track as a vital complement to ongoing direct final status negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians . Washington has provided more than $4.5 billion in assistance to the West Bank and Gaza since 1994, creating tens of thousands of temporary jobs.

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