EU to resume aid to new PA gov't in West Bank

The European Union said Monday it will resume direct aid payments to the new Palestinian Authority government of Prime Minister Salam Fayyad in the West Bank. EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana told reporters the 27-nation bloc would resume direct financial aid that was frozen more than a year ago and also planned to deliver assistance to Palestinians in the Gaza Strip through the United Nations or an existing temporary program that bypasses the Hamas leadership there. "In order to help the Palestinian people in Gaza, we will need some mechanism that cannot be a direct support" given that Hamas is sworn to destroy the Jewish state, Solana said on arrival at an EU foreign ministers meeting.