The flag of the United Nations, flying at United Nations Plaza in the Civic Center, San Francisco, California, United States of America – Makaristos/Wikimedia
The flag of the United Nations, flying at United Nations Plaza in the Civic Center, San Francisco, California, United States of America – Makaristos/Wikimedia

Spain rejects US decision to end funding UNRWA

Wed, Sep. 5, 2018
CAIRO – 5 September 2018: Spain rejects the serious decision taken by the United States to end all funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA).

Spain rejects the accusations made by the US against the UNRWA when it described it as "a corrupt and inefficient agency", according to the statement issued by the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation on Tuesday.

The statement referred that these accusations contradict with the reality as the UNRWA has been operating under extremely difficult conditions, and has carried outits duty to provide emergency support and social assistance to Palestinian refugees for almost 70 years.

Spain confirms that the UNRWA's critical financial situation that resulted from Trump’s decision will pose a threat to the continuity of its vital program in the health, educational and nutritional fields, which benefits Palestinians in the Middle East.

In addition to the negative impacts of this decision on humanitarian assistance and protection, preventing the basic services from 3 million Palestinian refugees would negatively affect the stability in the Middle East and Gaza Strip.

In this regard, the statement added that Spain confirms its firm commitment and participation in the efforts made by the main European donors, which seek to find joint solutions allowing UNRWA to continue working in a sustainable way.

Hence, Spain declares its full support and commitment to the European Union and the member states to exert more efforts to tackle the negative impact of the U.S. decision.

Furthermore, Spain, throughthe Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), will make urgent contributions to UNRWA and will also participate in the Donors Conference, called for by Jordan.

US has long been the biggest donor to the UNRWA, donating more than $350 million to the agency in 2017. It is funded by the voluntary contributions from UN Member States and from the Regular Budget of the United Nations.

“The agency’s services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, microfinance and emergency assistance, including in times of armed conflict,” according to UNRWA.

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