Celebrating 70 Years of Partnership and Solidarity: Japanese Princesses Visit Amman New Camp to Show Support for UNRWA and Palestine Refugees

30 May 2023
Her Imperial Highness Princess Takamado (right) cradles a baby during her visit to the UNRWA health centre in Amman New Camp on 30 May 2023, with her daughter, Her Imperial Highness Princess Tsuguko of Takamado (center) looking on. © 2023 UNRWA Photo

Today, Her Imperial Highness Princess Takamado and Her imperial Highness Princess Tsuguko of Takamado, accompanied by the Japanese Ambassador to Jordan, H.E. Jiro Okuyama, visited Amman New Camp to show their support for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) and Palestine Refugees living in the camp. The Japanese royals were warmly welcomed by the UNRWA Director of Health, Dr. Akihiro Seita, the Acting Director of UNRWA Affairs in Jordan, Mr. Olaf Becker, and the Director-General of the Department of Palestinian Affairs (DPA), H.E. Eng. Rafiq Kherfan.

This was the second time that Her Imperial Highness Princess Takamado visited a Palestine Refugee camp in Jordan, having previously visited Baqa'a Camp in 1996 with her late husband, His Imperial Highness Prince Takamado. The visit coincides with the 70th anniversary of the partnership between Japan and UNRWA and highlights Japan’s continued commitment and support to UNRWA and Palestine Refugees.

The Princesses were joyfully received with songs performed by students at the UNRWA ANC Preparatory Girls School No.2 where they were briefed about Palestine Refugees, UNRWA services and Amman New Camp. They also learned about the UNRWA education programme, challenges such as learning loss and improving the mental health among students and how UNRWA is making efforts to address them.

During a lively tour inside the school, the Princesses had an interactive dialogue with UNRWA Student Parliamentarians, who talked about their roles as student representatives of the school and their community, challenges they face in their education, and their ambitious aspirations for the future.

At the UNRWA health centre, the Princesses were briefed about the health program and how UNRWA has been protecting the health and wellbeing of the Palestine Refugees. This includes the innovative e-health services, the Maternal and Child Health Mobile Application (e-MCH), and the “Your Health” Non-Communicable Diseases Mobile Application (e-NCD).

In expressing their gratitude for Japan's support, UNRWA officials emphasized that this support is vital and enables the Agency to keep essential services uninterrupted and demonstrates the international responsibility and solidarity with Palestine Refugees.

"We are deeply honored by the visit of Her Imperial Highness Princess Takamado and Her Imperial Highness Princess Tsuguko of Takamado and very grateful for Japan's unwavering support for UNRWA and the Palestine Refugees," said Olaf Becker. "This visit underscores the strong partnership between Japan and UNRWA and the shared commitment to work together for Palestine refugees," he added.

2023 marks the 70th year anniversary of the support from Japan to UNRWA. The generous contribution this year includes US$ 5 million for Jordan Field to enhance the human security of Palestine Refugees in Jordan, specifically for food security and the provision of basic health care and education services.

 

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Notes to Editors 

  • Japan has offered over US$ 1 billion to the Palestinian Refugees since they started supporting UNRWA.
  • Over the past five years, Japan has contributed nearly US$ 200 million to UNRWA and Palestine refugees, including for the Japanese Supplementary Budget, the Emergency Grant Aid for the Syria EA winterization purposes, the Emergency Grant Aid for Gaza, emergency aid to help Gaza cover the increasing cost of food, and more.  In 2022, Japan ranked as the 6th largest donor the UNRWA.
Background Information: 

UNRWA is the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East. The United Nations General Assembly established UNRWA in 1949 with a mandate to provide humanitarian assistance and protection to registered Palestine refugees in the Agency’s area of operations pending a just and lasting solution to their plight.

UNRWA operates in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, The Gaza Strip, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria. 

Tens of thousands of Palestine refugees who lost their homes and livelihoods due to the 1948 conflict continue to be displaced and in need of support, nearly 75 years on.

UNRWA helps Palestine Refugees achieve their full potential in human development through quality services it provides in education, health care, relief and social services, protection, camp infrastructure and improvement, microfinance, and emergency assistance. UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions.

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For more information, please contact:

Juliette Touma
UNRWA Director of Communications
Mobile: 
+962-79-867-4628 (on whatsapp)
Tamara Alrifai
UNRWA Spokesperson/ Director of External Relations & Communications
Mobile: 
+962 (0)79 090 0140