Protection in Jordan

In Jordan, the 2.2 million Palestine refugees who are registered with UNRWA enjoy broad inclusion in social and economic life. The vast majority have Jordanian nationality, with the exception of some 158,000 ‘ex-Gazan’ refugees – Palestinians who fled from Gaza to Jordan in the aftermath of the June 1967 hostilities. Several legal restrictions limit their rights and contribute to their vulnerable living conditions.

Jordan also hosts around 17,000 Palestine refugees from Syria (PRS), 47 per cent of whom are children. While most of them are assessed as highly vulnerable and receive UNRWA assistance, many of them additionally face a difficult protection situation, mainly due to their precarious legal status in the country. Other vulnerable groups among the Palestine refugee population in Jordan include those living below the poverty line, women and children exposed to different forms of violence including gender-based violence (GBV), and persons with disabilities suffering social exclusion.

In Jordan, UNRWA targets the specific vulnerabilities of individuals and groups through a range of protection interventions, including enhancing access to UNRWA services and assistance; strengthening referral pathways with external service providers; improved case management mechanisms; and monitoring, reporting and advocating with duty bearers to promote respect for the rights of Palestine refugees in Jordan in accordance with international law, especially for the rights of and access to services for ‘ex-Gazans’ and PRS.

Protection is further mainstreamed through Area Protection Working Groups, which include area staff from UNRWA programmes (such as Health, Education, Relief and Social Services) and provide a forum to identify and address a broad range of protection concerns (such as child marriage, violence affecting children or school drop-out). Individual protection support to PRS is provided by dedicated protection workers for PRS. UNRWA also implements GBV-related activities, from response to individual cases to prevention initiatives.

*Last updated: March 2018