On Monday, 3 October, the UNRWA Commissioner-General Pierre Krähenbühl; the Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation, Lilianne Ploumen; and the Mayor of the City of The Hague, Jozias van Aartsen, officially opened the thirty-second edition of the travelling UNRWA exhibition, ‘The Long Journey’.
The exhibition features moving photos from the Agency’s Film and Photo Archive of the lives and history of Palestine refugees since the first flight in 1948, as well as UNRWA service delivery throughout the decades. It is a stark testimony to the many challenges Palestine refugees have faced throughout the decades, but also bears witness to their extraordinary resilience in the face of adversity.
The exhibition also illustrates the strong 45-year partnership between the European Union and UNRWA. It showcases how the European Union has steadfastly supported Palestine refugees through predictable and generous annual contributions to the Agency’s core education, health care, and relief and social services programmes, as well as through ad hoc funding to respond to emerging and specific needs stemming from the humanitarian crises in the occupied Palestinian territory, in Lebanon and in Syria.
The exhibition will be open to the public until 28 October in The Hague City Hall (the Atrium Den Haag).
Since 1971, the European Union and UNRWA have maintained a strategic partnership governed by the shared objective to support the human development, humanitarian and protection needs of Palestine refugees and promote stability in the Middle East. Today, the European Union is the largest multilateral provider of international assistance to Palestine refugees. This reliable and predictable support from the European Union enables UNRWA to provide core services to more than 5 million Palestine refugees in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, the West Bank and Gaza, including quality education for roughly half a million children and primary health care for more than 3.5 million patients. Collectively, the EU and its Member States are also among the largest contributors to the Agency’s humanitarian emergency appeals and projects in response to various crises and specific needs across the region. The partnership between the European Union and UNRWA has allowed millions of Palestine refugees to be better educated, live healthier lives, access employment opportunities and improve their living conditions, thus contributing to the development of the entire region.