The UN refugee agency has asked for ৬ 1.6 billion
The United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA, on Tuesday announced a request for 1.6 billion in funding to help address the “long-term” budget deficit.
This is the latest in a series of UNRWA warnings about possible deep cuts if the international community fails to provide further assistance.
The head of the agency, Philip Lazarini, said in a statement: “The long-term agency budget deficit threatens the livelihoods and well-being of Palestinian refugees, which serves UNRWA and poses a serious threat to the agency’s ability to sustain services.”
UNRWA funds were damaged in 2018 when former US President Donald Trump stopped supporting the agency.
His administration has described UNRWA as “irreparably flawed”, citing Israeli criticism of the organization, which was founded in 1949, a year after Israel was created.
President Joe Biden’s administration has regained some support, but UNRWA says it is still fighting.
In November, it warned that it was facing an “existential threat” to the budget gap.
The organization has 28,000 employees and provides education and health care to more than 5 million Palestinians registered in the Palestinian territories, including the Israeli-occupied East Jerusalem, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria.