Posts Tagged ‘unrwa’
On World Refugee Day, let us reaffirm the importance of solidarity and burden-sharing by the international community. Refugees have been deprived of their homes, but they must not be deprived of their futures – UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
A Palestinian refugee is a person whose normal place of residence was Palestine during the period between 1 June 1946 and 15 May 1948 and those who both lost their homes and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict (as defined by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, UNRWA).
One in every three refugees in the world is Palestinian.
There are approximately 7 million Palestinian refugees in the world and they can be categorised as:
- The original ‘Nakhba refugees’ and their descendants (4.5 million)
- The 1967 Six Day War refugees and descendants (1 million)
- ‘Low intensity population transfer’ refugees and other refugees
All refugees have the right to return to their homes and/ or receive compensation for the loss or damage of their properties. Israel has been deliberately denying the right to return of the Palestinian refugees which is a clear violation of international law.
‘We should do whatever it takes to prevent the Palestinians from coming back to their homes. The old will die and the young will eventually forget’ – words of Israel’s first Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion.
Date: Wednesday 24 March 2010
Cayley Theatre, Luxborough Building, Westminster University, 35 Marylebone Road, London, NW1 5LS
China’s Xinhua news agency reports that it’s only take 12 months for UNRWA rebuild the first house:
Due to an Israeli blockade, construction materials are not available in Gaza and the new house was built of mud bricks.
The clay house will not be an everlasting alternative to al-Athamna’s apartment building that housed tens of his family members, but compared to his neighbors who still live in tents, the 75-year-old grandfather is very satisfied.
“I thank the UNRWA and call upon the entire world to keep funding the UNRWA so it can help all people in need and build them a house like the one I received today,” he said.
President Jimmy Carter writes in The Guardian, “We can wait no longer to restart the peace process. The human suffering demands urgent relief”
… Of more immediate concern, those under siege in Gaza face another winter of intense personal suffering. I visited Gaza after the devastating January war and observed homeless people huddling in makeshift tents, under plastic sheets, or in caves dug into the debris of their former homes. Despite offers by Palestinian leaders and international agencies to guarantee no use of imported materials for even defensive military purposes, cement, lumber, and panes of glass are not being permitted to pass entry points into Gaza. The US and other nations have accepted this abhorrent situation without forceful corrective action.