ROME / UNRWA CONFERENCE PRESSER

15-Mar-2018 00:03:07
Following the Extraordinary Ministerial Conference held today in FAO headquarters in Rome in support of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), Pierre Krahenbuhl, the Commissioner-General of the Agency announced an additional funding of around 100 million USD has been pledged to support the organization’s vital services to Palestine refugee and students. FAO
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STORY: ROME / UNRWA CONFERENCE PRESSER
TRT: 3:07
SOURCE: FAO
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH /NATS

DATELINE: 15 MARCH 2018, ROME, ITALY
SHOTLIST
1. Wide shot, speakers at press conference
2. Cutaway, audience
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Antonio Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General:
“Now it is very clear, it is absolutely essential that the extraordinary unanimity in political support to UNRWA and its activity translates itself into cash, into the financial support necessary to fully bridge the gap. A very important first step was reached today but a long way is in front of us.”
4. Cutaway, audience
5. SOUNDBITE (English), Mr Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary General:
“Thank you very much on behalf of United Nations for all those have participated today and we really want to be sure that this effort is pursued and that will be able to reach everything that's needed for this organization that is very cost-effective and provides services of high quality gets the necessary support to deliver what the Palestine refugees need, deserve and have the right to receive."
6. Wide cutaway to audience
7. SOUNDBITE ( English ) Pierre Krahenbuhl, Commissioner-General UNRWA:
“ At present, UNRWA has recorded new contributions – additional funding of a total just around 100 million USD. We consider this a very important first step in the collective effort and mobilization to close this year’s critical funding shortfall. And I must say this combination between formidable political engagement and a strong first step on the path to closing the shortfall is indeed encouraging.”
8. Cutaway to audience
9. SOUNDBITE ( English) H.E Sameh Shoukry, Minister for Foreign Affairs Eqypt: “We recognize the importance of the contribution of the United States in the past and look forward that can continue to play a fundamental role in support of UNRWA and also the support of the peace process to enable the establishment of the Palestine state, the security and stability of the region.”
10. Cutaway, cameras
11. SOUNDBITE ( French ) Pierre Krahenbuhl, Commissioner-General UNRWA:
“When you provide traditional humanitarian aid, that’s to say you distribute food aid, you provide medicines, this is the response to a situation in which a person is a victim. When you invest, like UNRWA does, in education for half a million boys and girls in 700 schools throughout the Middle East, you are investing in the future, the in development of competences, you consider the person as an actor of his/her destiny.”
12. SOUNDBITE ( French ) Pierre Krahenbuhl, Commissioner-General UNRWA:
“If you think about the instability in the Middle East, if you think about the risk of radicalization, if you think from a European perspective, to the possibility of seeing new migration movements towards Europe, this is an investment that needs to be protected and celebrated every day of the year.”
13. Meed shot, photo opp, Krahenbul and three ministers
STORYLINE
Following the Extraordinary Ministerial Conference held today in FAO headquarters in Rome in support of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), Pierre Krahenbuhl, the Commissioner-General of the Agency announced an additional funding of around 100 million USD has been pledged to support the organization’s vital services to Palestine refugee and students.

UNRWA, the oldest and largest UN humanitarian and human development programme in the Middle East, serving over five million Palestine refugees, is experiencing the worst financial crisis in its 70 year history and may be forced to suspend services.

Following the conference, Antonio Guterres, the UN Secretary-General told reporters in Rome today (15 Mar) that “it is absolutely essential that the extraordinary unanimity in political support to UNRWA and its activity translates itself into cash, into the financial support necessary to fully bridge the gap.”

He added that “a very important first step was reached today but a long way is in front of us.”

Thanking all those who participated in the conference, the Secretary-General said “we really want to be sure that this effort is pursued and that will be able to reach everything that's needed for this organization that is very cost-effective and provides services of high quality gets the necessary support to deliver what the Palestine refugees need, deserve and have the right to receive."

Pierre Krahenbuhl, Commissioner-General of UNRWA reported that “at present, UNRWA has recorded new contributions – additional funding of a total just around 100 million USD. “

He said “we consider this a very important first step in the collective effort and mobilization to close this year’s critical funding shortfall. And I must say this combination between formidable political engagement and a strong first step on the path to closing the shortfall is indeed encouraging.”

Sameh Shoukry, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Eqypt and a co-chair of the conference, said “we recognize the importance of the contribution of the United States in the past and look forward that can continue to play a fundamental role in support of UNRWA and also the support of the peace process to enable the establishment of the Palestine state, the security and stability of the region.”

In January this year, the United States decided to scale down its contribution to UNRWA – from over 350 million USD in 2017 to only 60 million USD in 2018.
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