US and Israeli efforts to limit UNRWA´s mandate to one year only

A member of the PLO Executive Committee and Head of the Refugee Affairs Department, Ahmed Abu Holly, revealed that the United States and Israel are pushing for the renewal of the mandate of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in the voting scheduled early next month. One year instead of three.

Abu Holly said in a statement on Sunday that "there is a Palestinian and Arab movement to thwart US-Israeli attempts in the corridors of the United Nations to redefine the Palestinian refugee, and to influence the renewal of the mandate of UNRWA's work and limited to a year."

Abu Holly said that Palestinian-Arab coordination is to "thwart the US administration's and Israel's attempts to prejudice the status of the Palestinian refugee by redefining it or passing the UNRWA liquidation scheme."

He added that "the great challenge for the PLO is to face the American pressure and the pressure of the occupation government on the member states of the United Nations, in order to thwart the renewal of the mandate."

Abu Holly stressed that UNRWA must continue its work in accordance with its mandate under resolution 302, until the return of Palestinian refugees to their homes in accordance with resolution 194.

UNRWA media adviser Adnan Abu Hasna warned a few days ago that any imbalance in the Agency's operations and services for Palestinian refugees would threaten regional security in the region.

Abu Hasna told reporters in Gaza that UNRWA is responsible for providing basic services to more than five and a half million Palestinian refugees and its continuing role is an important regional stabilizer.

He said that "the final stages of the renewal of the mandate of UNRWA for three years is currently being through the drafting of the resolution between the Palestinian Mission to the United Nations and the European Union."

The draft resolution will be presented to the Fourth Committee for Combating Colonialism at the United Nations and will then be put to a vote in the General Assembly of the United Nations on 1 December.

The current US administration has cut financial support entirely to UNRWA since the beginning of this year, and has called on several occasions for the cancellation of the Agency, a demand repeatedly made by Israel.


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