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UNRWA: Critical Services for Palestinian Refugees in Danger

Posted On: 23-09-2023 | Human Rights , International
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The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) has stated that it will only be able to maintain its vital basic services for Palestinian refugees until the end of September and October, given the commitments made at the conference held on Friday.

In a press release issued on Saturday, UNRWA affirmed that it will continue its efforts to mobilize the necessary funding to sustain its services until the end of the year.

Jordan and Sweden hosted a high-level ministerial meeting to support Palestinian refugees and UNRWA on the sidelines of the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly, attended by UN Secretary-General António Guterres.

The member states reiterated their strong political support for the agency and explored ways to break the deadlock threatening its ability to provide essential services to Palestinian refugees in the region, according to a statement from UNRWA received by "Donia Al-Watan".

They stated that the generous commitments made by many member states today would contribute to UNRWA's core budget, used for vital services including education and healthcare, as well as its emergency responses to multiple crises in the region.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres said during the meeting, "I am very proud of the work of UNRWA, which is a lifeline for millions of Palestinian refugees, but I am very concerned about its future."

He added that the needs continue to grow, but the funds either remain stagnant or diminish, emphasizing that "maintaining UNRWA is in our collective interest and our collective responsibility."

UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini stated, "What is urgently needed is a just political solution for Palestinian refugees, whose plight remains one of the longest-standing refugee crises unresolved in the world."

He added, "While we welcome the commitments made at this meeting, I urge our partners to prioritize the protection of the rights of Palestinian refugees and address the issue of UNRWA's sustainability."

UNRWA appealed to its partners to urgently provide sufficient funds this week and shift the focus from the agency's financial situation to the sustainability of the agency and the right of Palestinian refugees to a dignified life.

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