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Dr. Abu Holi: Additional contributions will help address the financial deficit in UNRWA's regular and emergency budgets

Posted On: 03-06-2023 | International
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Ramallah / PNN / 

Member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and Head of the Refugee Affairs Department affirmed that the outcomes of the UNRWA Donor Conference pledges from donor countries will contribute to addressing the financial deficit in UNRWA's regular and emergency budgets but have not fully closed the financial gap.

In a press statement issued today in response to the conference's outcomes, he stated that the conference carried supportive political messages for UNRWA's work and served as a new starting point for UNRWA and host countries to intensify efforts in mobilizing resources to cover the significant remaining financial deficit, which continues to hinder the services provided by UNRWA to Palestinian refugees in its five operational areas.

Abu Holi noted that the new contributions pledged by some donor countries to UNRWA's budget during the conference amounted to $107.2 million, which, despite its importance, is insufficient.

He thanked the donor countries that announced additional new contributions to UNRWA's budget, emphasizing that UNRWA's support is indispensable and a genuine investment towards achieving sustainable human development for Palestinian refugees. He expressed hope that these new pledges would encourage other donors to provide additional contributions in the future.

Abu Holi revealed that the financial deficit after the conference amounts to $819.7 million out of a total budget of $1.632 billion, highlighting that the funds received by UNRWA amount to $812.3 million, including the new pledges obtained during the conference.

He emphasized that UNRWA's financial crisis remains unresolved, and the pledges received, although important in bridging the funding gap, do not compensate for the reduction in contributions by some donor countries to UNRWA.

He stressed that the stability of UNRWA's budget requires sufficient and sustainable funding from donor countries to address the chronic funding shortfall and move away from unstable voluntary funding, which puts UNRWA in recurring and renewed crises every year.

He called on the United Nations and its Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to increase their financial contributions from their regular budget to support UNRWA's budget, in line with their decision issued last year.

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