Updated humanitarian and early recovery appeal - hostilities in Gaza and mounting tensions in the West Bank, May-December 2021

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Following a dramatic intensification in violence in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) in May 2021, including an escalation in hostilities leading to airstrikes on Gaza between 10 and 21 May, and clashes in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, on 15 May UNRWA issued a US$ 38 million Flash Appeal to respond to the immediate humanitarian needs of affected populations.

The impact of the conflict on Palestine refugees has been devastating. UNRWA is issuing a revised appeal to address the humanitarian needs of Palestine refugees who remain displaced in Gaza, and those in the West Bank including East Jerusalem affected by the tensions and violence.

This updated appeal incorporates the immediate emergency response actions implemented by UNRWA in Gaza and the West Bank between 10 and 21 May as described in the initial Flash Appeal, as well as the early recovery needs of Palestine refugees in Gaza and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, until 31 December 2021. UNRWA will continue to monitor the situation and update its assessment of needs accordingly.

The response under this updated Appeal is directly related to the Agency’s strategic objective of mitigating the effects of humanitarian emergencies on Palestine refugees and providing services in a dignified and safe manner, in accordance with the rights of protected populations under International Humanitarian Law (IHL). UNRWA continues to coordinate closely with humanitarian clusters in the oPt. This appeal includes interventions on shelter repair and reconstruction activities and rehabilitation of UNRWA installations. These are not fully included in the oPt inter-agency appeal lead by UNOCHA, which has a shorter time frame than this humanitarian and early recovery appeal.1 In accordance with international law, UNRWA renews its commitment to deliver humanitarian assistance to Palestine refugees in accordance with its mandate and in full respect of the humanitarian principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality, and independence as outlined in the General Assembly Resolution 46/182. UNRWA remains committed to providing assistance to people in need solely on the basis of need and vulnerability.

UNRWA remains deeply concerned about actions by the parties to the conflict during these recent hostilities that caused damage to its installations and violated its inviolability and neutrality. The Agency will continue to advocate for greater respect for international law, international humanitarian law (IHL) and international human rights law (IHRL) with relevant stakeholders.

We underscore for all our partners that the activities presented in this appeal can only be implemented if the Agency’s Programme Budget and oPt Emergency Appeal for 2021 receive contributions in the amount required to sustain staffing and infrastructure essential to the delivery of health, education, mental health, relief, environmental health, and protection services as well as the coordination and management components of the response. In addition, the implementation of activities related to reconstruction in Gaza requires the smooth flow of goods and materials through the only designated entry point, Kerem Shalom Crossing.