New Delhi: The Government of India has increased its annual contribution for UNRWA from US$ 1.25 million to US$ 5 million from 2018-19 for three years. India made this announcement of this substantive increase of annual contribution to UNRWA at the extraordinary Ministerial Conference held in Rome on 15 March, 2018. This enhancement was made in the backdrop of the unprecedented financial crisis being faced by UNRWA, which has been delivering valuable public services to Palestine Refugees around the world.
The four fold increase in contribution is based on EAM’s commitment to enhance India’s support to UNRWA at the NAM Ministerial meeting on Palestine on 19th September, 2017. It is also part of our enhanced engagement with Palestine, particularly in the wake of PM’s first ever historic visit to Palestine on 10 February, 2018.
“This enhancement was made in the backdrop of the unprecedented financial crisis being faced by UNRWA, which has been delivering valuable public services to Palestine refugees around the world,” the statement said.
This move can be seen as India’s enhanced engagement with Palestine, particularly in the wake of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s historic visit to Palestine on February 10, the first ever by an Indian Prime Minister to the war-ravaged nation.
The UNRWA’s present trouble started after US President Donald Trump withheld more than half of the US-pledged aid to the agency.
The White House informed the UNRWA about this funding cut which means that it will receive approximately $60 million in US aid. The US has been UNRWA’s single largest donor for decades.
Trump last year announced that the US recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and that his country’s embassy will be shifted to that city.
UNRWA has been providing health, education, relief and social services, and emergency humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian refugees across Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip for 65 years.