Today, the Government of India contributed US$ 2.5 million to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) in support of the Agency’s programmes and services, including education, health care, relief and social services for Palestine refugees. The contribution was presented to UNRWA by Mr. Sunil Kumar, Director of the West Asia and North Africa Division of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs.
Mr. Karim Amer, Director of Partnerships of the Department of External Relations of UNRWA, said: “This timely contribution is a strong demonstration of India’s unwavering support to the work of UNRWA and commitment to the wellbeing for Palestine refugees. On behalf of UNRWA, I would like to express our deep appreciation for the Government of India for its continued funding to the Agency and its backing of Palestine refugees across the Middle East.”
The Government of India is a dedicated donor to UNRWA, having given US$ 20 million in support of core UNRWA services to Palestine refugees across the Middle East since 2018. It is thanks to the enduring support of donors like the Government of India that the Agency is able to provide vital services to Palestine refugees across the Middle East in the face of its continuing challenges.
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UNRWA is confronted with an increased demand for services resulting from a growth in the number of registered Palestine refugees, the extent of their vulnerability and their deepening poverty. UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions and financial support has been outpaced by the growth in needs. As a result, the UNRWA programme budget, which supports the delivery of core essential services, operates with a large shortfall. UNRWA encourages all Member States to work collectively to exert all possible efforts to fully fund the Agency’s programme budget. UNRWA emergency programmes and key projects, also operating with large shortfalls, are funded through separate funding portals.
UNRWA is a United Nations agency established by the General Assembly in 1949 and mandated to provide assistance and protection to some 5.7 million Palestine refugees registered with UNRWA across its five fields of operation. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank, including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip achieve their full human development potential, pending a just and lasting solution to their plight. UNRWA services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, protection and microfinance.