The Bihar Post

America severs ties with UN’s Palestinian refugee agency

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Washington: The Donald Trump administration has officially ended its ties with UN’s Palestinian refugee agency UNRWA, reports said.

Washington said that after carefully reviewing the issue, it will not make additional contribution to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency.

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The agency was set up to take care of those Palestinians displaced by the 1948 Arab-Israeli war.

Condemning the US action, Nabil Abu Rudeina, spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, told Reuters news agency: “Such a punishment will not succeed to change the fact that the United States no longer has a role in the region and that it is not a part of the solution.”

A statement from UNRWA, pertaining to the US decision, read:

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We regret the United States’ decision to provide no further funding to UNRWA, which provides essential services to Palestine refugees and contributes to stability in the region.

The US has traditionally been the largest single contributor to UNRWA. We appreciate its support over the years.

UNRWA enjoys the full confidence of the Secretary-General. Commissioner General Pierre Krahenbuhl has led a rapid, innovative and tireless effort to overcome the unexpected financial crisis UNRWA has faced this year. It has expanded the donor base, raised considerable new funding, and explored new avenues of support. In addition, UNRWA took extraordinary internal management measures to increase efficiencies and reduce costs.

UNRWA has a strong record of providing high-quality education, health and other essential services, often in extremely difficult circumstances, to Palestine refugees who are in great need. The Secretary-General calls on other countries to help fill the remaining financial gap, so that UNRWA can continue to provide this vital assistance, as well as a sense of hope this vulnerable population.
Stephane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General

Image courtesy: Laura Sunnen/UNRWA


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