Independent Review of Mechanisms and Procedures to Ensure Adherence by UNRWA to the Humanitarian Principle of Neutrality

Monday, April 22, 2024

Executive summary

An Independent Review Group on the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) was appointed by the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General, in consultation with the UNRWA Commissioner-General, on 5 February 2024. The Group was created to assess whether UNRWA is doing everything within its power to ensure neutrality and respond to allegations of serious neutrality breaches when they are made, taking into account the […] context in which it has to work, especially in Gaza,1 and to make recommendations for UNRWA to improve and strengthen in this area, if necessary. This followed allegations made by the Government of Israel in January 2024 that some UNRWA staff may have participated in the 7 October 2023 terror attacks on Israel. The UN Secretary-General also activated a separate investigation by the UN’s Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) to determine the veracity of these allegations, which, if proven true, would be horrifying in addition to being a grave violation of their obligations towards the Organization.

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Independent Review of Mechanisms and Procedures to Ensure Adherence by UNRWA to the Humanitarian Principle of Neutrality