Japan Set to Resume Funding to Palestine Refugee Agency

Japan Set to Resume Funding to Palestine Refugee Agency

A view of destruction at UNRWA headquarters, which provides aid to millions of Palestinians, Gaza on February 11, 2024. (Photo: Anadolu Agency)

Japan is set to resume funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA), reported Anadolu.

Foreign Minister Kamikawa Yoko met with agency chief Philippe Lazzarini in Tokyo on Thursday to discuss the agency’s work in the wake of Israel’s ongoing assault on the besieged coastal enclave of Gaza.

Japan’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the UNRWA will establish a “new framework” with Tokyo on project management and monitoring to ensure transparency and traceability of projects, with the active participation of the agency’s Japanese staff.

Yoko appreciated the UNRWA’s action plan for the future and additional bilateral efforts with Japan in line with its priorities.

“Japan and the UNRWA confirmed that they will advance final coordination about necessary efforts to resume Japan’s contribution,” said the statement as Yoko said effective measures should be taken by the agency “to ensure that our assistance is not used for any terrorist activities.”

Early this year in January, Japan had joined at least 11 of its western allies, including the US and the UK, to halt the funding to the UN agency in the wake of allegations by Tel Aviv against UNRWA.

However, Australia, Canada, Sweden, and Iceland have since resumed the funding.

More than 32,500 Palestinians have since been killed and over 74,900 injured amid mass destruction and shortages of necessities.

The Israeli army has also imposed a blockade on the Gaza Strip, leaving most of the population, particularly residents of the north, on the verge of starvation.

The Israeli war has pushed 85% of Gaza’s population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water, and medicine, while 60% of the enclave’s infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which in an interim ruling in January ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

In its Thursday verdict indicating additional measures, the top court ordered Israel to ensure “unhindered provision” of urgent aid to Gaza. The ICJ said: “Palestinians in Gaza are no longer facing only a risk of famine … (but) famine is setting in.”

Short Link : https://prc.org.uk/en/news/6149