UNRWA provides photographic evidence that recent media reports of stolen ambulances are false

10 August 2009

10 August 2009

Jerusalem

On the record statement by Christopher Gunness, UNRWA Spokesperson: "There have been a number of recent media reports, including in an Israeli newspaper and an Israeli radio station, that Hamas seized and stole three ambulances belonging to UNRWA. I have consistently denided this story and rejected it as part of a campaign of misinformation. This photograph clearly shows the Deputy Director of our Gaza office, Christer Nordal, standing in front of the three ambulances in the UNRWA compound in Gaza."

 

Background Information

UNRWA is a United Nations agency established by the General Assembly in 1949 and is mandated to provide assistance and protection to a population of some 5 million registered Palestine refugees. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank and the Gaza Strip to achieve their full potential in human development, pending a just solution to their plight. UNRWA’s services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, and microfinance.

Financial support to UNRWA has not kept pace with an increased demand for services caused by growing numbers of registered refugees, expanding need, and deepening poverty. As a result, the Agency's General Fund (GF), supporting UNRWA’s core activities and 97 per cent reliant on voluntary contributions, has begun each year with a large projected deficit. Currently the deficit stands at US$ 56 million.

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