"Members of the U.S. Congress are demanding the State Department make public a key report that includes precise figures on the number of people who became refugees in the 1948 War of Independence.
The existence of the State Department assessment, compiled and classified under the Obama administration, was first disclosed by the Washington Free Beacon six months ago. Lawmakers say the report could impact how the United States views the refugee issue when the actual number of refugees is made public and is significantly smaller than the number of Palestinian refugees according to the United Nations.
Once the largest donor to the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), which provides assistance to Palestinian refugees and their descendants, in January the United States cut $65 million of a planned $125 million in aid funds to agency.
The agency, which asserts that there are 5.1 million Palestinian refugees worldwide, focuses exclusively on providing aid to Palestinians in Judea and Samaria, Gaza Strip, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon, while all other refugee in the world receive services from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees...
Sources who have seen the report say that the State Department's assessment was that only 20,000 of the 700,000 Arab refugees who fled Palestine during the War of Independence are still alive and displaced from their homes..."