UN to Appeal for $1.2 Billion to Help 5 Million Palestinians

UNRWA head says 42 countries and institutions increased their donations in 2018 after United States cut its funding for the United Nations Palestinian refugee agency

Palestinian students at one of the UNRWA schools in Beirut, Lebanon, September 3, 2018.
Hussein Malla,AP

The head of the UN agency for Palestinian refugees says he hopes donors will be as generous this year as they were last year after the United States cut all funding for the $1.2 billion program to help some 5 million Palestinians.

Pierre Krahenbuhl told reporters Friday that 42 countries and institutions increased their funding to the UN Relief and Works Agency last year "and that was a very remarkable result — as was the fact that every single pledge that was made to UNRWA in 2018 was honored."

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He praised strong donations from Europe, Gulf countries, Asia and the Americas.

Krahenbuhl said UNRWA launched the same appeal for $1.2 billion this year — and he hopes it will be met at Tuesday's pledging conference at U.N. headquarters.