Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs calls for not politicising aid to Palestinian refugees

Ramallah/PNN/

The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the State of Palestine regrets the allegations of misconduct that have been reported regarding staff at UNRWA. We understand that a formal UN investigation into the matter is ongoing and await its findings as to the whether the allegations are proven or dismissed.

In this regard, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the State of Palestine expresses deep regret about the decisions announced recently by two donor countries of suspension of their voluntary contributions to UNRWA in light of this matter.

These vital contributions rather directly support and ensure the continuity of UNRWA’s core programmes in education for children, healthcare for families, relief and social services, including for youth and women, as well as emergency assistance, including food aid to the poorest among the refugees.

We call on all to refrain from politicization of such humanitarian assistance and appeal that the millions of Palestine refugees registered with the Agency not be deprived of this assistance that is so crucial for their well-being, development and protection, as mandated by the UN General Assembly.

We thus urge restraint by all stakeholders until the formal investigation is concluded and appropriate follow-up can be pursued. We call for reversal of recent regrettable decisions that would cause undue harm to the Palestine refugee community and instability across the Agency’s fields of operation in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the State of Palestine expresses the hope that this matter will be speedily and appropriately resolved, and avails itself of the opportunity to reaffirm its deepest gratitude to the host countries and all donor countries, institutions and organizations for their longstanding support to the Palestine refugees and to the mandate and work of UNRWA, as well as its appreciation to UNRWA staff in all fields of operation for their dedicated service.

We urge continuation of such principled support at this critical time and until a just solution for the Palestine refugee question is reached in accordance with the relevant resolutions, including General Assembly resolution 194 (III).