US donates $123 million to UNRWA

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An UNRWA staff member distributing food aid to refugees in Gaza.

A new contribution of US$ 123 million to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) will enable the Agency to continue its work serving a population of some five million registered Palestine refugees in the region. The latest donation announced by the United States, brings the total U.S. contribution to UNRWA in 2013 to more than US$ 244 million.

UNRWA says US$ 75 million will go towards the General Fund, which supports core activities in education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement and microfinance.

UNRWA Commissioner-General Filippo Grandi said "the United States has assisted the Agency for several decades as a major bilateral donor", adding that "its commitment to Palestine refugees is crucial to maintaining regional stability and supporting health, education and other programmes that UNRWA offers to this disadvantaged community". He said "despite the difficult economic situation worldwide, the U.S. has proven once again that it is dedicated to the development of Palestine refugee potential".

The donation from the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration includes an additional US$ 37 million earmarked for the Agency’s Emergency Appeal in Gaza and the West Bank.

U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Kelly Clements reaffirmed the United States support for UNRWA services, saying: "The United States has been proud to work with UNRWA for many years" and remains "committed to supporting their efforts to help Palestinian refugees receive the services that they need".

Donn Bobb, United Nations.


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