ABU DHABI, 30th April, 2018 (WAM) — The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees, UNRWA, has welcomed a US$50 million donation from the UAE, which was made upon the directives of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
The UAE’s donation aims to support the UNRWA during the most serious financial crisis in its history, as well as to maintain its key services that it provides to 5.4 million Palestine refugees in the Middle East.
Pierre Krahenbuhl, Commissioner-General of the UNRWA, who praised the decision, said, “The UAE is a valued and dynamic partner in supporting the UNRWA’s efforts to support the dignity and rights of Palestine refugees. I am grateful for this announcement, which confirms the UAE’s commitment to our mandate and provides hope for Palestine refugees.”
“I would like to take this opportunity to honour the UAE during the Year of Zayed, which marks the centenary of the birth of its founding father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan,” Krahenbuhl added.
Since its establishment in 1971, the UAE has been a constant supporter of the UNRWA’s education programme. Its funding has grown significantly in recent years and has kept schools open and preserved access to education for 526,000 girls and boys, including 270,000 in the Gaza Strip.
“The UAE is an ardent supporter of the UNRWA and its life-saving work for the Palestinian people. We pledge to provide an additional $50 million to support the UNRWA’s education and healthcare programmes,” said Reem bint Ibrahim Al Hashimy, Minister of State for International Cooperation.
The partnership between the UAE and the UNRWA plays a key role in empowering young Palestine refugees, as well as developing skills and providing opportunities. The UAE’s trust in the agency is a source of encouragement and incentive, to strive for innovation and creativity.
“We believe that the agency’s strategic social development priorities and humanitarian activities are fit for purpose to help Palestine refugees acquire knowledge and skills, which will lead to long and healthy lives, achieve decent standards of living, and promote human rights. The assistance provided to the UNRWA is in line with the UAE’s foreign assistance policy and its efforts to promote the rights of children to education and women’s empowerment, as well as to train teachers,” Al Hashimy added.
The UNRWA also has key partnerships with Dubai Cares and the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation, as well as other Emirati institutions, and is looking forward to further developing its cooperation.