Possessions are salvaged from a damaged building in Gaza following Israeli strikes in May. (OCHA/Mohammad Lubbad)
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) received a contribution of US$ 1 million from the Government of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) towards supporting food assistance in Gaza.
UNRWA said in a press release issued on Monday that this generous contribution will provide much needed assistance to the Agency’s 2021 UNRWA Emergency Appeal for the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt).
In Gaza, around 70per cent of the population are vulnerable refugees, who are highly reliant on UNRWA provision of a critical humanitarian lifeline.
The continued Israeli blockade, the persisting challenges of COVID-19 and the latest round of violence by the Israeli military in May have further undermined food security of the majority of the Palestine refugee households, eroded their coping mechanisms and aggravated their living conditions.
This contribution will allow UNRWA to provide emergency food for one quarter to approximately 50,000 food-insecure Palestine refugees.
UNRWA Acting Director of External Relations, Tamara Alrifai, expressed her sincere appreciation to the Government of China for its support to the Agency: “Ensuring adequate funding for this key emergency intervention is a priority in all discussions between UNRWA and UN member-states. We are extremely grateful for this renewed generous contribution from China. This support is the confirmation of China’s commitment to the vital and life-saving food assistance provided by the Agency to over one million Palestine refugees in Gaza.”
Reiterating their commitment to supporting UNRWA and Palestine refugees, Head of the Office of the People’s Republic of China to the State of Palestine, Ambassador Guo Wei, shared: “China appreciated continuous provision by UNRWA of important assistance and services to Palestine refugees in the Middle East for a long time.”
“Since the latest escalation of violence in Gaza, UNRWA has made every effort to ease the humanitarian crisis in the oPt, which has won wide praise. China has always attached importance to the cooperation with UNRWA and has actively responded to the Agency’s emergency humanitarian appeals. China will, as always, support the work of UNRWA and continue to provide practical assistance to Palestine refugees”, he added.
This year, China also contributes 200,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines to the Agency’s five fields of operation in Gaza, the West Bank (including East Jerusalem), Jordan, Lebanon and Syria to complement the host countries’ national vaccination programmes by covering the needs of Palestine refugees along with the national priority populations.