India has donated $2.5 million to the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, prompting the UNRWA on Tuesday to welcome the generous contribution at a “difficult time”, particularly in Gaza.
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA), functional since 1950, carries out direct relief and work programmes for registered Palestine refugees. It is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions from UN Member States. India on Monday gave UNRWA $2.5 million as part of its annual contribution of $5 million for the year 2023-24 to support the agency’s core programmes and services, including education, healthcare, relief, and social services provided to Palestinian refugees, the Representative Office of India at Ramallah said.
The contribution was handed over by the Representative of India (ROI) to Palestine, Renu Yadav, to the Director of Partnerships, Department of External Relations of UNRWA, Karim Amer. The ROI underlined India’s continued support for the agency’s activities in the region and the services it provides to Palestinian refugees during the handover ceremony at UNRWA’s field office in Jerusalem, an official press release said. Confirming that UNRWA received a very generous contribution from India yesterday (Monday), which is most welcome during these difficult times and in the face of huge needs across the region, particularly in Gaza, a spokesperson for UNRWA, Tamara Alrifai, told PTI.
During the first-ever Indian Prime Minister’s visit to Palestine in February 2018, India increased its annual financial contribution fourfold to the UNRWA core budget, from USD 1.25 million to USD 5 million. India has also made a strong appeal to other traditional donors of UNRWA to consider enhancing their contributions as well as to non-donor member states to consider contributing to the agency in solidarity with the Palestine refugees.