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UNITED
NATIONS
A

        General Assembly
A/3212
30 June 1956

ANNUAL REPORT OF THE DIRECTOR
OF THE UNITED NATIONS RELIEF AND
WORKS AGENCY FOR PALESTINE REFUGEES
IN THE NEAR EAST





Covering the period 1 July 1955 to 30 June 1956











GENERAL ASSEMBLY
OFFICIAL RECORDS: ELEVENTH SESSION
SUPPLEMENT No. 14 (A/3212)

New York, 1956


NOTE DATED 14 NOVEMBER 1956 FROM THE DIRECTOR
OF THE UNITED NATIONS RELIEF AND WORKS AGENCY
FOR PALESTINE REFUGEES IN THE NEAR EAST

In submitting the attached report on the work of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East covering the period 1 July 1955 to 30 June 1956, the Director wishes to call the attention of the General Assembly to the fact that it was drafted before the crisis in the Near East that occurred during October and November 1956. A special report describing the activities of the Agency, as a direct result of this crisis, will be submitted separately to the General Assembly.

The attached report describes the work undertaken by the Agency during the period 1 July 1955 to 30 June 1956. It describes also the local operating conditions under which the Agency's work was carried out, as well as the financial situation which confronts the Agency.

It is essential that the General Assembly should understand the human factor which conditions the Agency's work and which will continue to condition it so long as the political problem posed by the Palestine question is unsolved. It is equally essential that the General Assembly should be fully aware of the prevailing operating conditions, which depend also in large measure on the degree of political tension in the area.

Furthermore, the Government of each Member State of the United Nations should clearly realize that; whatever the political situation surrounding the Agency's work, it will remain impossible for that work to be adequately undertaken in the absence of financial support commensurate with the policies which the General Assembly authorizes the UNRWA to follow.

Beirut, 14 November 1956


TABLE OF CONTENTS

Page
INTRODUCTION 1
I.








II.






III.

IV.





V.
THE PROVISION OF RELIEF
Registration and numbers
Food
Shelter
Health
Welfare
Clothing
Improvement of relief standards

ASSISTANCE TOWARDS SELF-SUPPORT
Education
Placement
Agricultural development
Loans and grants
Works projects and general development

RELATIONSHIP WITH HOST GOVERNMENTS

FINANCES
Fiscal period 1955-1956
Fiscal period 1956-1957
Working capital
Contributions

SUMMARY CONCLUSIONS
2
2
3
3
4
5
5
6

6
7
8
8
8
8

9

11
11
11
12
12

12
ANNEXES
A. REFUGEE STATISTICS
Table 1. Number of refugees and rations distributed
Table 2. Distribution of refugees according to age and country of
residence as at 30 June 1956
Table 3. Number of refugees in camps according to country
14

14
14
B. HEALTH SERVICES
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.
Organization and staff
Clinics, hospitals and laboratories
Maternal and child health
Nutrition
Communicable diseases control
Environmental sanitation
Public health nursing
Health education of the public
Medical education and training
Medical and sanitary supplies
15
15
16
17
17
18
19
19
19
20
C. WELFARE
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
General
Group activities
Case work
Voluntary agencies
Staff training
20
20
21
21
22
D. SELF-SUPPORT PROGRAMMES
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
The economic basis of self-support
Self-support projects in Jordan
Self-support projects in Syria
Self-support projects in Egypt and the Gaza district
Placement service
Summary
22
22
24
25
26
26
E. EDUCATION AND TRAINING
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
General
Elementary education
Secondary education
University education
Vocational training
Fundamental education
Teacher training
Physical facilities
UNESCO staff and services
28
29
29
30
30
31
32
32
33
F. FINANCIAL OPERATIONS
1.
2.
3.

4.
Financial statements
General financial requirements
Proposed budget for the eighteen months
1 July 1956-31 December 1957
Financing the 1956-1957 budget
35
36

37
38
G. LEGAL ASPECTS OF THE WORK OF THE AGENCY
1.
2.
General legal activities and problems
Legal work in the various host countries
39
40
H. CO-OPERATION WITH OTHER UNITED NATIONS ORGANIZATIONS
1. General
2. United Nations bodies
3. Specialized agencies
41
41
42
iii


NOTE

Symbols of United Nations documents are composed of capital letters combined with figures. Mention of such a symbol indicates a reference to a United Nations document.





iv

INTRODUCTION

1. In accordance with the provisions of paragraph 21 of resolution 302 (IV) of 8 December 1949 and of paragraph 11 of resolution 916 (X) of 3 December 1955, the following report on the work of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) for the year ending 30 June 1956 is submitted to the General Assembly.

2. A detailed description of the origin of the Agency and of its mission and work prior to 1 July 1955 will be found in earlier reports and United Nations documents.1/

3. The tasks assigned by the General Assembly to the Agency remain those described in the report of the Director and Advisory Commission to the ninth session 2/ as:

(a) The continuing long-term task which aims at assisting the refugees to become self-supporting; and

(b) The temporary task of providing subsistence, medical care and shelter for the refugees.

The complementary nature of these tasks was noted in the last annual report.3/ Progress has been slow and fragmentary in connexion with the first of the above tasks, for reasons which were described fully in last year's report and which are set forth in section II below. It is believed that the second task--the details of which are described in section I below--has been carried out as well as local conditions and available funds have permitted. The experience of the year confirms not only that the need for relief, in some form, will continue for several years more (though the present mandate of the Agency extends only until 1960), but also that, in order to carry out the Agency's vast and complex operation with the maximum efficiency, full co-operation between the recipients of relief, the host Governments, the contributing Governments and the Agency itself is required.

4. In the light of this experience, it is particularly important that the General Assembly should review carefully what the Agency has done during the year ended 30 June 1956. After appraising the results of that work, and considering the local operating conditions in the area (section III below) and the financial situation which confronts the Agency (section IV below), the Assembly will be able to determine specific lines of action for the future.

5. An effective review and appraisal can be made only if there is a clear understanding of the human factor which conditions the Agency's work. Above all, the problem posed by the Palestine refugees is concerned with human suffering, with the memories and frustrations of hundreds of thousands of individual human beings. It is not simply an economic problem susceptible of economic solutions. The substantial accomplishments of the Agency to date should be measured primarily in human terms--what has UNRWA been able to do to help the refugees to live? The lack of accomplishment in some fields should also be viewed in the light of the psychological reactions which derive
from the suffering, memories and frustrations of these displaced people.

6. At the time of writing the present report (mid-1956), the situation in the Near East is extremely serious. It is to be hoped fervently that it will have ameliorated by the time the report is published. However, it would be a grave error to believe that a state of tension exists only when military operations, frontier incidents or political antagonisms are making headlines in the world Press. Although it varies in degree, there is a continuing tension in this sensitive area, and it is a matter for constant concern. During the discussion of the Director's report at the tenth session of the General Assembly, it was stated that there was inadequate understanding of the close connexion between the continuous tension in the Near East and the problem of the Palestine refugees. During the period under review, there has been an increasing awareness, in public discussions of the situation, that the nearly one million people whose lives were disrupted by the events of 1947-1948 are today, in 1956, one of the most important causes of the continued unrest and, at the same time, the victims of it. But that awareness has not yet been transmuted into constructive political action.

7. It must be stressed once more that the refugees' desire to return to their homeland continues unabated. There are, of course, some who have established themselves satisfactorily in new lives; but the great majority maintain their collective claim that a grave injustice has been done to them and assert that the only acceptable solution is a return to their homes. As indicated in last year's report,4/ it is not possible to estimate how many refugees would in fact accept an opportunity to be repatriated if that repatriation were to mean something different from returning to their old homes and their former way of life. So long, however, as nothing is done to help requite this longing for their homeland, either by giving them the choice between repatriation and compensation provided for in paragraph 11 of General Assembly resolution 194 (III) of 11 December 1948, or through some other solution acceptable to all parties, the long-term task assigned to the Agency will prove unrealizable.

8. It is easy to understand why this desire to return to their former homes has made impossible any large-scale progress in the Agency's long-term task of bringing about "the reintegration of the refugees into the economic life of the Near East"5/ during the period under review. It is not so immediately understandable why it has become more difficult and frustrating to carry out the Agency's short-term relief task. But it has. This problem will be discussed in more detail in section III below. It will suffice to say here that the difficulties have their roots in the attitude of the refugees, and to some extent of the host Governments, towards the Agency. For the past eight years, the refugees have held the United Nations largely responsible for their plight; the Agency has been the symbol of the United Nations to most of them, who regard UNRWA relief as a debt owed them by the world at large. They have considered, and still consider, that the relief services are insufficient. The fact that the Agency's funds are extremely limited and that every effort has been made, within the limitation of available funds, to provide increasingly better services is seldom understood and in any event is not accepted as a valid consideration. It must be added that unscrupulous political agitators have consistently exploited the understandable bitterness of the refugees; the result is to encourage ill-will and, in certain cases, open resistance towards the Agency. Whether the refugees' attitude has been objectively right or wrong does not affect the present issue, which is concerned only with the attitude as a fact and with its consequences for the Agency.

I. THE PROVISION OF RELIEF

9. During the year under review, the Agency has adhered to the policy adopted by the General Assembly at its tenth session that the programme of relief should be pursued bearing in mind the limitations imposed by the extent of contributions.6/ Standards of relief have been maintained at least at the previously existing levels, and in some cases have been slightly improved. For example, there have been improvements in refugee housing, the health services have been somewhat expanded, and for the first time the Agency has begun to meet part of the children's need for new clothes.

10. It will be recalled that the Director presented to the tenth session of the General Assembly a special report on "Other claimants for relief".7/ In its resolution 916 (X), the Assembly noted 8/ "the serious need of the other claimants for relief . . . namely, the frontier villagers in Jordan, the non-refugee population of the Gaza strip, a number of the refugees in Egypt and certain of the Bedouin;" and appealed "to private organizations to give them increased assistance to the extent that local Governments cannot do so".

11. As a consequence of that resolution, the Director has been compelled to consider assistance to these other claimants for relief as outside the Agency's mandate. Private organizations have continued to help them; but he feels it his duty to report that a meeting of a large number of important private organizations during the period under review came to the conclusion that the size of the task was such that they could not undertake the large-scale and long-term relief programme which was necessary to provide even a minimal relief service. Consequently, the need outlined in the special report has been unmet and still exists.

12. The Director also wishes to report that the Agency is continuing to receive applications for assistance, to which lack of funds prevents it from acceding, from bona fide Palestine refugees who did not apply for assistance on the establishment of UNRWA because they then had sufficient resources to live on, and did not foresee that the Palestine problem would remain without a solution for a long time. Many of them have used up their resources and are now in need. (These applicants are in addition to those already on the rolls who, as described in paragraph 30 below, are in need of shelter that they can no longer provide for themselves.)

REGISTRATION AND NUMBERS

13. Annex A to the present report shows that the number of refugees registered with the Agency has increased from 905,986 to 922,279 during the year under review. There has been no substantial change in their geographical distribution, though the movement has continued of small numbers of refugees both from the Gaza strip and from Jordan seeking work in the countries around the Persian Gulf; similarly, a movement has continued of refugees from that part of Jordan west of the Jordan River into the eastern part of the country.

14. The difficulties encountered in Jordan regarding the deletion from the ration rolls of the names of those not entitled to relief, and the consequential limitation in the distribution of basic foodstuffs to children, were mentioned in the previous annual report 9/ and fully described in the special report to the tenth session on "Other claimants for relief".10/ The tenth session noted "with gratification that the Government of Jordan and the Agency have made substantial progress toward resolving the difficulties which impede the granting of rations to all qualified children in Jordan".11/ Although agreement was reached between the Government and the Agency, in October 1955, on procedures for rectification of the relief rolls through a jointly administered system of additions and deletions, it has unfortunately not proved possible to put those procedures into effect. This has been mainly due to the troubled political situation in Jordan, which apparently has made the Government unwilling to embark on any new action that might be opposed by refugee leaders. The distribution of relief therefore remains inequitable in Jordan, to the detriment of many refugee children and much against the wishes of the Agency; the correction of this situation rests in the hands of the Government of Jordan and of the refugees themselves. Under existing circumstances, it is impossible to determine whether the Agency spends more on giving relief to persons not entitled to it than it saves by not giving rations to children who should have them. In any event, the situation is thoroughly unsatisfactory and should be corrected. The Agency considers that this will require either action by the Jordan Government along the lines already mentioned, or new instructions from the General Assembly.

15. It has been the Agency's policy to regard a refugee family as self-supporting when its income reaches a certain level, depending on the size of the family and the area in which it lives. In the past, the policy was to make the family subject to removal from the relief rolls, with simultaneous loss of rations and all other services (medical, educational, etc.), when its income reached that level.

16. The rigidity of that system, which resulted in a family normally receiving either all the Agency's services or none of them, encouraged the natural unwillingness of a recipient of relief to admit the earning of an income which provided an alternative (complete or partial) source of livelihood. Further, the Agency's ration card was regarded by refugees as their only evidence of refugee status. These considerations, added to the fact that refugees tended to look on relief as a right, have made it unnecessarily difficult for the Agency to eliminate from the relief rolls the refugees who become self-supporting by their own efforts.

17. The Agency has therefore modified the system so that the assistance given to a refugee family decreases gradually as the family's income rises. The modified system has been put into effect in Lebanon. The steps in the scale at which the different services are suspended have been adjusted so as to give the refugees an incentive to earn more, that is to say, the value of the service suspended is less than the difference of income between one step and the next. And the services which in the eyes of many refugees are the most important--free medical care and education--are only suspended when the refugee concerned can reasonably be expected to be able to afford to pay for them himself. The alteration in assistance, consequent on increased income, is now therefore not only quantitative but qualitative. This modification as applied in Lebanon has produced good results, being regarded as more equitable both by the refugees and by the Agency.

18. Proposals for the institution of the same system in Jordan and Syria were made to the respective Governments during 1955, and to the Egyptian authorities later for its institution in Gaza. The Agency believes that it would be in the interests of all concerned if the proposals could be put into effect in all areas.
FOOD

19. There has been no change in the quantity of basic foodstuffs (dry rations) distributed by the Agency to each refugee on the ration rolls; it continues to provide about 1,600 calories daily in winter and 1,500 in summer.

20. In addition to the quantity distributed to all refugees on the ration rolls, a monthly ration of basic foodstuffs, equivalent to about 500 calories daily, has been made available since 1 July 1955 to pregnant and nursing women; an average of 27,000 women have benefited monthly. Extra rations have also been provided for non-hospitalized tuberculosis cases for the first time.

21. The supplementary feeding programs (cooked meals) for persons certified by the Health Division as needing them has been improved by an increase in the proportion of fresh foods used, and provides an additional 700 calories per day for its beneficiaries. The average number of refugees who benefited from this programme during the year was 46,600 daily. As the necessary funds were not contributed, it was not possible to implement the Director's suggestion (with which the Advisory Commission agreed)12/ that a quantitative improvement in supplementary feeding be made.

22. Further, an average of 190,000 refugees benefited from a daily distribution of milk. The ration for babies under one year provides 190 calories per day; that for children between one and fifteen years old, for pregnant and nursing women and for sick persons on doctor's recommendation provides 140 calories per day. This milk is distributed both in liquid form and as powder. The number of children receiving their daily ration of liquid milk in school has increased from an average of about 21,000 in the previous year to an average of about 40,000 in the period under review.

23. The scientific study of the nutrition of the refugees referred to in the last annual report 13/ was conducted during the year under review. It was planned by the World Health Organization, in co-operation with the Food and Agriculture Organization, and the directing staff was appointed by WHO. It consisted of a survey of the nutritional status of individual refugees as well as of the actual food consumed by refugee families. Similar surveys were made of individuals and families among the non-refugees, for comparative purposes. The results of the survey have not as yet been received by the Agency.

24. As has been indicated in the last two annual reports, the Agency does not consider that the quantity of basic foodstuffs made available to the refugees is adequate for a complete diet. The reasons whereby the refugees are able to subsist, without evident signs of general malnutrition, were set forth in the last annual report.14/ The Agency would like to be in a position to increase the amount of foodstuffs distributed, but has been unable to do so because of the limitation of funds. As an indication of the amount of money which would be involved in increasing the distribution of basic foodstuffs to all refugees on the ration rolls, the Agency has estimated that, on the basis of mid-1956 prices, the cost to it for every 100 calorie increase would be of the magnitude of about $1 million. This would be in the form of flour, the cheapest commodity practicable for the purpose.

SHELTER

25. The increase and improvement in camp accommodation noted in the last annual report 15/ has continued. The percentage of registered refugees living in camps has increased from 37.1 to 38.9 during the year. Whereas the number of tents has remained stationary at about 14,000, the number of huts has increased from 60,043 to over 79,000. The number of tents is thus less than half what it was in 1950, and the number of huts has increased from 63,000 to over 83,000.

26. In Gaza, where the conversion of Agency camps from tents to huts was completed in 1954, camp construction continued during the period under review, but it went only part way to meet the needs of new families. During the year, 1,824 huts were built by the Agency, which in addition provided roofs for another 287 huts built by the refugees themselves.

27. In Jordan, the Agency has embarked on a two-year programme aiming to eliminate tents completely. Part of the same programme involves the building of improved public service buildings--schools, clinics, feeding centres and so forth--of which a good number are now finished. The establishment of new families resulting from the 4,000 marriages of camp residents in Jordan [i:per annum] means that there will be a continuing need for more huts to be constructed. In addition, the Government has requested that more camps should be built in Jordan, and a survey of need is being made jointly by the Government and the Agency; but, apart from administrative and financial difficulties, finding appropriate sites presents problems.

28. The three camps under construction in Lebanon at the end of the last fiscal period have been completed. One of them houses refugees who previously were semi-nomad Bedouins; their establishment in a settled life, without prejudice to their ultimate domicile, is an apparently successful social development. It is expected that a review of the camp situation in Lebanon may lead to the Government requesting that more hutted camps should be built.

29. In Syria, the initiative of the Government in organizing, in co-operation with the refugees and the Agency, new refugee housing schemes in the neighbourhood of Damascus and Lattaqié, where opportunities for work are good, was mentioned in the last annual report. The scheme near Lattaqié is now complete. The Agency is building huts for some fifty destitute refugee families and gives cash grants towards the cost of a new shelter to families becoming too large for their existing huts and to newly married persons establishing a new home.

30. In spite of the progress made by the Agency in providing the refugees with more adequate shelter, their over-all minimum needs have not yet been met. The steady pressure for the admission of the destitute into the Agency's camps is illustrated by the rise in the proportion of registered refugees in camps:16/
Per cent
June 1950
1952
1954
1956
29.3
32.6
34.4
38.9

There are still refugees living in caves in the hills of Palestine; there are still concentrations of refugees in unofficial camps for which the Agency cannot afford to assume responsibility; in and around many official camps there are still so-called squatters--refugees for whom Agency shelter cannot be provided. And (a problem peculiar to Lebanon) it has not yet proved possible to provide adequate accommodation for the refugees moved during the year by the local authorities for security reasons from the border area. The need of newly married persons for a home of their own is not entirely met, the lag being due in part to delays in construction and in part to budgetary difficulties. Further, it has been possible only partly to meet the need (reported last year) of refugees living outside camps, who have exhausted their resources and can no longer provide for themselves.

31. It must be reported with particular regret that the funds were not forthcoming to provide the 53,500 Bedouins in Jordan with the tenting stated in last year's report to be needed.17/ They have received no shelter assistance since they became refugees, and their tents are now in rags. It will be recalled that the replacement of Bedouin tents was one of the improvements in relief standards proposed by the Director and approved by the Advisory Commission subject to the contribution of the necessary funds.18/

32. To summarize, the Agency's present shelter programme has the following objectives:

(a) To replace tents with huts in existing camps, and to build new camps to replace unsatisfactory accommodation;

(b) To provide accommodation in camps for the most urgent needs caused by social changes among the existing camp population;

(c) To provide tents for the Bedouins mentioned above.

The present budget provides for this policy, taking into account the rate at which construction can go forward; but the extent to which the policy can be carried out depends upon the receipt of funds.

33. In addition, the Agency would like to provide shelter for the first time for some refugees who have always been inadequately housed and for others who, through the exhaustion of their own resources, now find themselves in need. This problem is particularly acute in Jordan and Lebanon, although it also exists to some degree in Gaza and Syria. The accomplishment of this objective would require funds additional to those requested in the present budget. It is difficult to estimate how much would be needed in any particular period as the rate of expenditure necessarily depends on factors somewhat beyond the Agency's control, such as the availability and suitability of camp sites that would have to be made available by the host Governments and the speed with which construction could in fact be carried out in the various areas. It is, however, possible to say that as at present, a total of about $3,500,000 would be needed; about 56,000 families would benefit.
HEALTH

34. An account of the Agency's health services, which remain substantially unchanged from the previous year, is contained in annex B below. In general, the health of refugees under the Agency's care has continued to be satisfactory.

35. Among the over 3,300 workers active in the field of health (including medical care, supplementary feeding and camp maintenance services) more than 100 doctors and 100 qualified nurses extended their services to the refugees. Ninety clinics and out-patient departments were made use of and more than 2,200 beds were operated or subsidized. In the field of maternal and child health, attendance at the Agency's maternity clinics and infant health centres increased considerably to reach the impressive yearly figures of over 120,000 and almost 500,000 respectively.

36. There has been a modest expansion of the school health service which was established the previous year; one new school health team has been established in Jordan, so that at the end of the year four were operating in that country, two in Gaza and one each in Lebanon and Syria. The importance of this service is that the continuous examination of the schoolchildren will enable the general trend of their health to be determined over the years as well as particular conditions of ill-health to be treated in individual children.

37. Regarding tuberculosis, the negotiations for the construction of hospital facilities in Lebanon mentioned in the last annual report have been successfully concluded. At the Agency's expense, a new wing is being added to an existing private sanatorium; refugee patients will thus benefit from its existing facilities. The anti-tuberculosis programme has been strengthened in Jordan by the appointment of additional staff. The reporting system has been improved, as well as the method of following-up contacts. These administrative changes result from the recommendations made by a WHO consultant during the early months of 1955. There has been no material change during the year as regards tuberculosis care and control in the Gaza strip and Syria.

38. For some years, the Agency has been working towards the elimination of malaria in the Yarmouk and Jordan Valleys, which was one of the most malarial regions in the world. From the Agency's point of view, this has been necessary partly because of the large numbers of refugees living in the Jordan Valley and partly as a preparatory step towards its irrigation and development. The work has consisted in the draining of swamps and the gradual elimination of mosquitoes by a larvicidal campaign and residual spraying; it has also included the education of the villagers in anti-malaria measures. The result in the three years since 1953 has been the drainage of eighteen out of the twenty-two main swamps in the area, with a consequential increase in agricultural land, and the reduction of clinical malaria to one-fifth of its previous incidence. This work is now being integrated with the anti-malaria campaign of the Jordan Government covering the remainder of Jordan, the objective being the complete eradication of malaria from the whole country.

39. During the year, improvements were also made in environmental sanitation, especially in the disposal of excreta and refuse. The programme of health education of the public on which so much emphasis was laid proved successful and played an important role in the Agency's preventive health services. In the field of medical education, and beside the para-medical training programme (see annex B), plans for expanding especially the public health training of the Agency's doctors and nurses are to be carried out next year.

40. The Agency's present health policy is guided by the principle of following the national health programmes in the host countries and of integrating the Agency's services with any new plans and projects there. The present budget provides for that policy. As regards preventive health services, however, higher standards of care than those provided by the host Governments are desirable to help to meet the problems caused by over-crowding and living conditions in the camps. Increase of hospital facilities for tuberculosis patients in Gaza and Jordan, expansion of maternal and child-care services, and adjustment of personnel standards in camp clinics are among the improvements desirable for that reason.
WELFARE

41. A description of the Agency's welfare services will be found in annex C to the present report. Their aim and the methods used to reach it are unchanged; they are designed to help to maintain the morale of refugees by means of group activities and individual case work.

42. During the year, a survey has been made of the needs of handicapped youth. It has been estimated that there are about 3,000 orphans among the refugees and, in addition, about 4,400 who are cripples, blind, or deaf and dumb. From both the medical and welfare points of view, the care of orphans and chronic cases has always been regarded as an activity inappropriate for a temporary agency like UNRWA. The Agency has tried to place in private and governmental institutions those who cannot be cared for in their own families. It has found, however, that those institutions cannot carry the additional burden of refugee cases without special help. The Agency has, therefore, decided, as an experiment, to place 185 such children in existing institutions which will take charge, against the payment of a modest capital sum, of their maintenance, education, specialized training and eventual placement.

43. At first sight, this experiment appears to be an extension of the Agency's welfare services. In fact, however, if it is successful and then extended, it will lead to the rehabilitation, at a moderate cost, of several thousand refugees who would otherwise continue to receive UNRWA's services and in the long run remain a permanent burden on their countries of residence.

44. As the Agency's main point of contact with voluntary agencies is its welfare services, the Director takes this opportunity to place once more on record his appreciation of the important work of non-governmental organizations presently helping the Palestine refugees, with an inspiring spirit of selfless service. Some, not actually working in the field, provide funds and supplies. Others provide medical and welfare services (including hospitals and clinics), clothing and supplementary food; they also encourage and assist the construction of houses for refugees and they initiate small industrial and artisan enterprises to help refugees become self-supporting. A high proportion of the voluntary agencies are of religious inspiration; and a note-worthy function of those which are foreign to the Near East is to continue to keep the plight of the Palestine refugees before the attention of the public in their home countries.
CLOTHING

45. During the period under review, the Agency began for the first time to provide some new clothes for refugee children in its care. Under this project, boys under fifteen are being given a pair of shorts or trousers, a shirt and undergarments; and girls are being given a dress and undergarments. These clothes are being sewn largely by the refugee mothers themselves. Part of the cloth for this project has been woven by refugee weavers in the Gaza strip using yarn made available by the Agency; much needed and highly appreciated employment has thus been afforded. This UNRWA programme does not, however, diminish the need of refugee children for clothes collected by voluntary agencies.

46. Similarly, the clothing needs of adults have still to be met from contributions of used clothing coming from overseas, which during the year under review have totalled 1,307 metric tons. Shoes are also needed, and have been contributed in increased amounts (101 metric tons in the year under review). It remains important for the welfare of the refugees that collections of clothing and shoes should continue; but it is equally important that the material sent is in usable condition and suitable for the refugees' way of life. The Agency continues to pay for the transport of the used clothing and footwear to the Near East.
IMPROVEMENT OF RELIEF STANDARDS

47. The Director noted in his last report to the Assembly 19/ that additional food supplies, improved shelter, more kerosene and clothing, as well as assistance to the chronically ill, were needed. He pointed out, however, that such improvements raised issues of policy, because of the obvious requirement that, once started, they be continued.

48. After discussion of the matter, the Advisory Commission recommended, in its special report transmitted for the information of the General Assembly, that, if new sources of funds could be found the supplementary feeding programme for children should be extended, the tents of certain Bedouin should be replaced, additional kerosene should be distributed and shelter in Gaza should be improved.20/

49. As the additional funds have not been contributed--indeed, the budget for normal relief needs has been under-subscribed 21/ -it has unfortunately been impossible to make these improvements during the period under review. Provision for most of them, amounting to $1.5 million, has been included in the relief budget for the period 1 July 1956 to 31 December 1957, but whether they can be brought about will still depend on the availability of funds.

50. The Director wishes again to bring the general question of improvements in relief standards to the attention of the General Assembly. At the start of the Agency's operations, and for some years afterwards, the General Assembly assumed that the refugee problem would be short-lived. The barest emergency standards were therefore adopted. As these standards were plainly inadequate, gradual improvements were made and are continuing to be made, especially since (at its ninth session) the General Assembly extended the Agency's mandate to 30 June 1960. In spite of this, the present standards are satisfactory neither to the Agency nor to the refugees nor to the host Governments. Visitors from other parts of the world who have shown an interest in the refugee problem also criticize the standards.

51. The improvements which the Agency considers should be made in standards of feeding, of shelter and of health services, have been mentioned in paragraphs 24, 33 and 40 above. Specifications as to these improvements will be presented to the General Assembly at a later date, if it so desires.

II. ASSISTANCE TOWARDS SELF-SUPPORT

52. It cannot too often be emphasized that a refugee who has lost, or has never acquired, the habit of self-reliance and self-supporting work will be a useless burden on the community, whether he is later to be repatriated or to be resettled. In spite of the fact that one of the obstacles to the achievement of the General Assembly's goal of making the refugees self-supporting continues to be the opposition of the refugees in the mass and, in some cases, of the Governments of the area,22/ it is nevertheless true that most of the refugees, as individuals, are willing to work when the opportunity is presented and especially if they can also keep their UNRWA ration cards. To begin with, it should be remembered that a large number of refugees of the professional and property-owning classes (not recipients of UNRWA relief) have already fully established themselves in the Arab
States. Many others, as reported last year,23/ have found part-time or full-time work. This applies particularly in Syria where refugees in agricultural areas have the same opportunities for seasonal work as Syrians and where many of those in the industrial centres (especially Aleppo and Damascus) may find full-time work. It applies to a lesser extent in Lebanon, where a substantial number of refugees, particularly those living around Beirut and Tripoli, and in the Bekaa, are in regular or part-time work as a result of the expanding Lebanese economy. Unfortunately, however, the work opportunities are especially scarce in the areas in which most of the refugees live--Jordan and the Gaza strip.

53. One should not, therefore, draw the conclusion that the willingness of individuals to work will permit substantial progress towards making the mass of the refugees self-supporting and independent of outside support. In the first place, four-fifths of the refugees live in Gaza and Jordan; so that even if all the refugees in Lebanon and Syria should become self-supporting, the greater part of the problem would remain. In Gaza and Jordan, opportunities for local work and the chances of finding work by moving elsewhere remain small relative to the size of the problem. Secondly, the majority of the older generation of refugees are small farmers and farm labourers whose experience is quite unsuited to the skilled jobs at present available, or likely to become available in the immediate future. Thirdly, there is the natural increase of the refugee population. Finally, as already mentioned in previous reports, the refugees as a whole continue collectively to resist large-scale development projects, which appear to them to involve permanent resettlement and therefore to carry serious political implications.24/ It is, therefore, evident that, in the absence of wider and bolder political decisions concerning the entire refugee problem, there should be no optimism regarding its solution.

54. In the circumstances and under its existing mandate, the Agency has no alternative course in the matter of rehabilitation than the one it is now following. That is, to pursue with vigour the activities in which the refugees and host Governments are prepared to co-operate; and, to the extent that it can be directly related to making refugees self-supporting, to offer to assist in the economic development of the host countries; and to be prepared, by the elaboration of plans in co-operation with the host Governments, for the time when it may be possible to move ahead to larger-scale constructive enterprise. What has been done during the year under review is fully described in annex D to the present report. What follows here is a summary, emphasizing the important points.
EDUCATION

55. Next to the relief services proper (rations, shelter and health services), the Agency's educational system described in annex E to the present report, is that part of its programme which is most acceptable to and desired by refugees and host Governments. The Agency regards education and technical training as one of the most important means open to it for preparing the refugees to become self-supporting in accordance with the mandate given it by the General Assembly.25/ Its co-ordination with regional policy is normally ensured by consultation with the respective host Governments and by means of a joint working party (which met during the period under review in November 1955) convened by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization and consisting of representatives of the Departments of Education in the host Governments, of the Arab League and of the Agency.

56. The growth of the educational system was mentioned in last year's report;26/ it has continued during the year under review. The relevant figures are set out in detail in annex E. It will be noted from these figures that the number of new pupils entering the system has for the last two years become less, while on the other hand the pupils already in the system, and particularly girl pupils, tend to stay at school longer. Both these factors indicate that the system itself is gradually becoming normal.

57. To keep pace with the expansion of the Agency's schools, and to improve the standard of education provided in them, the Agency has in the year under review instituted a system of teacher training. Two pilot training centres have opened in Jordan and on the basis of experience gained, the Agency intends to open one full-scale teacher-training centre for men and one for women in Jordan, and one centre in Lebanon. The Egyptian authorities have also established a centre in Gaza, to which the Agency sends trainees at UNRWA expense. In all areas, the standard of teachers who could be recruited, as well as their morale, has been improved by a new salary scale which was introduced on 1 July 1955.

58. The Agency's technical-training programme has not developed as rapidly as was hoped. Although the agricultural training centre in Gaza was ready in April 1956, its opening was delayed at the time by frontier incidents and the resulting local political situation. Disturbances in Jordan during the winter delayed the finalization of arrangements for an agricultural training centre in the Jordan Valley. It has proved unexpectedly difficult to find sites in Jordan and Lebanon for the agricultural and vocational training centres that are planned; and as regards the terms on which the land would be made available and the centres constructed, account has had to be taken, in
reaching an agreement with landowners and the host Governments, of the fact that the Agency has a short life relative to the considerable expenditures involved, and of the desirability of ensuring a continuous appropriate use for the centres after the Agency has been liquidated. Towards the end of the period under review, however, two sites had been chosen in Lebanon and one in Jordan, and preparatory work had started on them. In Syria, the Government and the Agency have agreed in principle that an agricultural training centre should be established.

59. The experimental introduction of handicraft training in Gaza has proved a great success. It aims at preparing young refugees in the last two years of elementary and the first two years of secondary schooling to enter vocational training and to help to overcome any aversion the pupils have to working with their hands. It was intended that thirty handicraft units should be built or rented in Jordan, and instructors trained, so that the programme may begin in Jordan at the start of the 1956-1957 academic year. For budgetary reasons the number of units to be provided in Jordan for 1956-1957 was, however, cut to twenty; and plans for building a further sixteen in 1957-1958 have had to be cancelled. Cuts have also had to be made in the budgetary appropriations for the handicraft programme in Gaza.

60. At the end of the period under review, an acute problem was facing the Agency as regards its education programme in the Gaza strip, where the small area and the lack of natural resources mean that there are inadequate local opportunities of suitable employment for children leaving school. Children leaving elementary schools are in general unable to find work; and, with the main objective of keeping them occupied, the Agency was urged by the Egyptian authorities to allow a larger number than contemplated in the Agency's programme to attend secondary school. This, however, would clearly only postpone the issue. For although the smaller numbers leaving secondary schools in past years have on the whole been absorbed in employment either in the Gaza strip or elsewhere in the Arab world, their employment has generally been as schoolteachers, and opportunities for them in that profession are diminishing as their numbers increase. Evidently, therefore, the Agency's education system in Gaza can only lead to increased frustration and social unrest in the absence of increased opportunities for work in Gaza and increased opportunities for finding work in other parts of the Near East. The former received the attention of the Agency and of the Egyptian authorities,27/ but it became clear that no possible action in Gaza alone could by itself solve this major unemployment problem.

61. The subsidies paid by the Agency to the Governments, missions and other bodies in respect of the education of refugee children in their schools do not cover the full costs. The Agency receives many requests to increase its subsidies, but has not found it possible to meet them, particularly in view of the fact that the number of refugee pupils entering secondary education is rapidly increasing and that it is expensive for the Agency to maintain such pupils even at the present subsidy rate. This raises the question whether the Assembly regards the Agency as solely responsible for all refugee education and, if so, whether the additional funds can be made available.
PLACEMENT

62. A characteristic of the countries of the Near and Middle East is their steady economic development. An economic study published by the Agency during the year under review called attention to the remarkably high proportion of the national income that is being devoted in all countries of the area to this purpose. One result of that development is that there are, as has been pointed out in paragraph 52 above, numerous refugees in part or full-time employment in Lebanon and Syria.

63. In order to help refugees to find jobs with various employers both in the host countries and elsewhere, the Agency has for some years had a placement service, with representatives in its field offices. The service keeps a register of qualified refugees, arranges for trade testing, and keeps contact with potential employers throughout the area. It also, when necessary, pays refugees' fares to the location of the job. During the period under reference, nearly 20,000 refugees found employment with government and private employers. The jobs so found, however, are often short-term and seasonal, not resulting in permanent self-support.

64. During the year under review, 1,040 refugees who wished to emigrate, who had obtained visas on their own initiative and who had requested assistance from the Agency have been given travel grants when they demonstrated that they would otherwise not have been able to use their visas.
AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT

65. In addition to its education system and placement service, intended to help refugees to find and take advantage of existing opportunities for employment, the Agency has a number of projects in execution or contemplation which are designed to increase the number of jobs at present available. Most of these projects concern the development of agricultural land.

66. During the year under review, the engineering surveys having been finished previously, feasibility reports were completed concerning the two major projects mentioned in last year's report 28/--those for the utilization of the waters from the Jordan watershed in the Jordan Valley and from the Nile in Western Sinai. The technical conclusions reached in the reports are summarized in annex D. It should be noted, of course, that no work on the Jordan project can begin until agreement has been reached between the Governments concerned. As regards the Sinai project, the Egyptian Government stated, during the year under review, that insufficient water was available from current resources; the project cannot therefor be implemented for the time being.

67. Among the Agency's seven small-scale agricultural projects, seventy-nine families were installed during the period under review in one settlement near Bethlehem; irrigation work and housing construction were completed so that the population of another settlement in the Jordan Valley could be increased from forty families to seventy; exploratory well- drilling has indicated the possibility of increasing the cultivated area of a third project (also in the Jordan Valley) from 800 to 7,000 dunums; and the number of families on a fourth in Syria was increased from fifty to seventy-one. The afforestation programme in Gaza was also expanded.
LOANS AND GRANTS

68. As part of its programme to increase the number of jobs available in the host countries, the Agency in previous years administered in Syria a programme of individual grants, up to LS.500 29/ per person, to refugees engaged in small commercial enterprises to enable them to become self-supporting. This programme has continued, and a much larger one has been developed in Jordan during the year under review to assist the development of agricultural, commercial and industrial enterprises, as well as house-building. At the start, the programme in Jordan encountered some political opposition on the alleged ground that its success would prejudice refugees' rights to repatriation. This opposition has continued, although as at the end of the period under review, objections had somewhat diminished.

69. Larger enterprises are assisted in Jordan by means of the Jordan Development Bank, an independent enterprise to whose paid-up capital of JD.417,507 30/ the Agency has contributed JD.350,000. The Bank makes loans for agricultural and industrial development; among the latter are loans for the establishment of a cigarette factory and a new hotel in Jerusalem. An estimated 2,000 refugees are employed in enterprises supported by the Jordan Development Bank.

70. What are in reality grants in kind are made by providing modest houses for refugees who would be self-supporting but for the burden of rent. During the period under review, one such housing project for twenty-eight families has been completed and another for forty-eight nearly finished; both are in Jordan.
WORKS PROJECTS AND GENERAL DEVELOPMENT

71. By resolution 393 (V) adopted on 2 December 1950, the General Assembly considered that, without prejudice to the provisions of previous resolutions concerning repatriation or compensation, "the reintegration of the refugees into the economic life of the Near East, either by repatriation or resettlement, is essential for the time when international assistance is no longer available . . ." The emphasis on works leading to self-support rather than to the provision of temporary employment was further endorsed when, on
26 January 1952, the General Assembly, by resolution 513 (VI), approved the programme of relief and reintegration in accordance with which the Agency has operated ever since. Thus, the Agency has considered that, with the exception of funds expended on its education programme, all expenditures on rehabilitation should be conditional on the rapid self- support of a commensurate number of refugees. The Agency wishes to request the General Assembly's consideration of two possible departures from this policy.

72. The first relates to possible measures to meet the extremely serious conditions of poverty and unemployment in the Gaza strip, described in the last annual report.31/ The economic situation was slightly improved during the year under review through employment given to some 2,000 weavers under the Agency's clothing programme;32/ the continued operation of the Agency's carpentry and other shops to supply Agency needs for such things as desks and other furniture required for the expansion of the education system; the maintenance of its own factory for the construction of pipes, bricks and other cement products needed in its housing programme; increases in Agency salaries (of school-teachers, for example)33/ as well as increases in Egyptian expenditure in the Gaza strip. Nevertheless, these factors by themselves have been wholly inadequate to effect any real improvement in the economic condition of the Gaza Strip and of the refugees living there. Consequently, at the end of the period under review, proposals were drawn up by the Agency and the Egyptian authorities for the introduction of a special programme of works projects in Gaza. The main purpose of the projects was to provide employment and improve morale, so as to prevent social and political unrest. They were, at the same time, to provide some much-needed improvements in the area. Among the projects considered were: the construction of roads in Gaza town and in the Khan Younis municipality; the construction and repair of roads in refugee camps; the construction of a new drainage system in the Gaza municipality; the construction of a small port; and a project to create opportunities for young refugees to be profitably occupied in learning how to use simple tools as well as the elements of simple farming. After discussion with the Agency's Advisory Commission, the Director decided to proceed with the last-mentioned project, but to take no action with regard to the others pending the approval of the General Assembly and the provision of adequate funds.

73. The second suggested change in policy relates particularly to the situation in Jordan, where opportunities for self-support projects are very limited. The experience of the year under review has confirmed that some progress can continue to be made through small-scale agricultural schemes, individual grants and the like. However, these programmes, when taken all together, do little more than scratch the surface, for they have resulted in only a relatively small number of refugees becoming self-supporting. While the
Agency, therefore, is continuing its small-scale programmes and is ready to participate in the Yarmuk-Jordan project when related political problems are resolved, it requests the General Assembly to consider the enlargement of the Agency's mandate so as to permit expenditures, by loans or grants, upon general development programmes, with which the immediate employment or self-support of refugees need not be directly connected, but which will eventually benefit the refugees through increasing the general economic activity of the country.

III. RELATIONSHIP WITH HOST GOVERNMENTS

74. In the last annual report, and during the discussion of the Director's report by the Ad Hoc Political Committee at the tenth session of the General Assembly, attention was called to certain difficulties arising from Government-Agency relationships which were hampering the efficient carrying out of the Agency's work.34/ The Director stated that if arrangements could not be made with the Governments concerned to overcome these difficulties, he would consider it his duty to bring these matters before the General Assembly again and in more detail.35/

75. The Director is glad to report that in some cases satisfactory arrangements have been made, and the Agency is grateful to the individual government officials and technicians who have helped to this end. He regrets to have to report, however, that in certain respects the situation has grown more difficult, and he accordingly believes it important that the General Assembly should give serious thought to this matter.

76. In considering the question, the following factors should be borne in mind:

(a) The refugees constitute a high proportion of the total population of the host countries. In Gaza, refugees make up about 69 per cent of the entire population of the strip; in Jordan, 36 per cent of the people are refugees; in Lebanon, the percentage is much smaller, almost 7 per cent, but still substantial. Only in Syria is the proportion reasonably small, i.e., 2.3 per cent.

(b) The economies of the host countries have been subjected to serious strain by the influx of such large numbers of people. This strain is felt not only by the taxing of existing limited public services and resources, and by depressed labour markets, but the Governments themselves are called upon to finance some services for the refugees, as distinct from those financed by the Agency.

(c) The Agency is conducting very extensive operational services in various fields of nutrition, health and education, all being matters of direct concern to the host Governments.

(d) Although the Agency's mandate is strictly humanitarian, the refugee problem is at the core of the Palestine question, which is one of the most explosive political issues in the host countries and in the whole Near East.

77. These factors give the Agency's operations an importance in the life of the host countries that is unusual for an international organization. It follows that actions taken by the Agency are bound to affect actions and policies of the host Governments and
vice versa.

78. This interrelationship between Government and Agency has of course existed from the time UNRWA commenced its operations--then believed to be short-term. It was, however, relatively easy to make accommodations when it was hoped that the refugee problem was only a temporary one. But, as the years have passed and no solution to the problem was found, this interrelationship has been subject to increasing strains on both sides. One cause of strain is due to the fact that the refugee problem is approached by the Agency, under its mandate, from the sole point of view of relief and rehabilitation, whereas the problem represents for the Arab Governments a burning political issue also.

79. Under the circumstances, some of the Governments of the host countries have tended more and more to want to control or to impose restrictions on Agency actions. This creates particular difficulties in the personnel field. For example, two of the Governments have asserted, in effect, the right to veto the appointment of individual staff members of the
Agency; they have forced Agency personnel to leave their territory, without justified explanation; and they have refused admission of certain Agency personnel into their territories, even though no objection was raised against them in other host countries. The authorities of one of these have even prevented certain Agency staff members from leaving territory under its control, even when duty travel was involved.

80. As already mentioned in the reports of the Director to the ninth and tenth sessions,[sp,sm:36] the host Governments have at times ignored the Agency's international status in other ways--as, for example, by the imposition of import restrictions or taxes on supplies imported for refugees. The Agency, for its part, has sought to maintain its international character and to resist the infringements upon it mentioned in this and the preceding paragraph, but often without success.

81. In a number of other cases, misunderstandings and differences of opinion have arisen as to the nature and extent of UNRWA's responsibilities, which have caused serious difficulties for the Agency in the efficient conduct of its operations. One example is to be found in the situation in Jordan where, because of the refusal of the Government to carry out procedures for establishing more accurate registration records, the Agency has been unable to remove ineligible names from the rolls and to replace them with eligible ones, particularly children (see para. 14 above). Another example is to be found in the situation in the Gaza strip, where the Egyptian authorities took the position that the Agency was responsible for providing secondary education for all qualified pupils desiring such schooling, even though the percentage of pupils there who were given secondary education was already above that applied by UNRWA in other host countries and above that provided for in the Agency's programme for the progressive development of its education system (see par. 61 above). Still another example of uncertainty as to ultimate responsibility was presented when refugees not living in camps were forced to move from border or other areas (on security grounds) without adequate arrangements being made by the authorities to provide new facilities to house such refugees.

82. Where the Agency does not find it possible to provide the additional rations or the shelter or educational or other services demanded, it is often publicly accused by refugees, and at times by others, of failing to meet its responsibilities and of following policies inimical to the interests of the refugees. The heart of this problem lies in the realm of politics and, in effect, in the unsolved Palestine question itself. The refugees, who live frustrating lives, often in insecure areas, and who see little visible hope for the future, bring constant pressure on the host Governments to improve their material and political situation. They and the Governments openly regard the United Nations as responsible for their plight, and the consequent tendency is to deflect all pressures to UNRWA. Further, although some officials and some journalists have raised their voices in support of UNRWA's work, very little has been done publicly by the Governments to explain the true nature of the Agency's responsibilities and authority. Thus, the suspicions and ill-will which have been permitted to develop over the years, to the detriment of all concerned, have not been allayed. In some areas, this situation has, at times, become quite serious--as, for instance, when a cabinet minister in one host country stated that the Agency's policy was to "exterminate" the refugees through the deliberate refusal of proper medical attention. In this particular case, it was several weeks before a denial was issued by the Minister, even after strong official protests had been made by the Agency. False statements not only sow dissension and fear among the uninformed mass of the refugees: they also make the day-to-day work of the Agency and of its staff (which includes over 9,000 Palestinians) more difficult still; and they might, in the last analysis, be construed as an encouragement to unrest.

83. Many things done by the Agency no doubt could be done better. As mentioned in section I above there are basic ameliorations the Agency would very much like to carry out if it had sufficient funds; also there are improvements in procedures, in staffing and in policies that can and are being made. All in all, however, the Director believes that the job done by UNRWA is a reasonably good one, having in mind the scanty funds available and the frustrating conditions under which its staff works. He also believes that it
would be in the interest of the Palestine refugees to have the facts concerning the Agency presented to them fairly and thus improve the atmosphere in which the Agency operates. This can best be achieved by a concerted effort on the part of the host Governments to explain to the refugees, to the general public and the Arab States and to government officials at all levels the true nature of the mission entrusted to UNRWA and the limitations of its authority and its funds.

84. In the light of the preceding paragraphs it seems indispensable to ask the General Assembly to re-examine and make a reappraisal of the Agency's terms of reference, and to determine how best the refugees are to be assisted. For example, does the Assembly consider that the Agency should continue to have direct operational responsibilities--and do the host Governments desire this? Or does the Assembly wish the Agency's essential functions to be more limited, with operational control and responsibility entirely in the hands of the host Governments? It is important that the nature and extent of the Agency's responsibilities and authority should be made clear, and agreed to by the host Governments. It is also important for the Agency, no matter what its responsibilities, to have the open and full co-operation of host Governments. It should be understood that, in the event that local conditions in any area unduly hamper the carrying out of those responsibilities, it may be necessary for the Agency to suspend or terminate its operations in such an area.

IV. FINANCES

85. The Director draws the particular attention of the General Assembly to the urgent necessity of ensuring the provision of adequate funds for the Agency's work. This is a matter of transcendent importance. He must repeat the statement made in the last annual report that "if adequate funds are not made available when and as needed, serious and possibly disastrous hardships will be caused to the refugees who are dependent for their daily needs on UNRWA's services".37/ The Director regrets to report that, in spite of the appeals made during the past year, adequate funds were not received to enable the Agency to provide all the relief services needed.

86. The situation will even worsen this year if urgent measures are not taken by the Member States of the General Assembly to remedy it promptly. Not only should some relief services be improved (as indicated in paragraph 50 above and in the last special report 38/ of the Advisory Commission), but as the cost of basic materials is rising and the number of refugees is increasing, the Assembly must, if more funds are not received this year than last, contemplate a decrease in the services made available to the refugees. Such a possibility presents a very grave and serious decision to all Member States of the United Nations, each of which presumably has a direct interest in the condition and future of the Palestine refugees, on whose behalf the General Assembly created UNRWA. It may be of interest to the Assembly to know that, during the past year, only twenty-three Members contributed to UNRWA and that, of those, two countries contributed 94 per cent of the total.

87. A full report of the Agency's financial and budgetary position is contained in annex F to the present report. Reference is also made to the financial statements and report of the Board of Auditors to be presented separately to the General Assembly.39/ The following paragraphs will serve to highlight some of the most important features of the Agency's financial position.
FISCAL PERIOD 1955-1956

88. The budget for the operations described in this report, including administrative expenses and overheads, was $26.8 million in respect of relief services and $16 million in respect of education and small-scale self-support projects. In addition, the Agency's Advisory Commission recommended a supplementary relief budget of $1.7 million, providing the money could be found over and above that necessary to finance the regular budget;40/ and a further $76.6 million would have been needed if the irrigation projects in the Jordan and Yarmuk Valleys and in Western Sinai could have been started.

89. Actual expenditure on relief services during the year under review was $23.4 million; the difference between budgeted and actual expenditure is more fully explained in annex F, being mainly accounted for by the facts that it did not prove necessary to use the operational and other reserves provided for in the budget, that certain construction and equipment purchases were deferred, and that commodity costs were lower than originally anticipated. Contributions actually received from Governments during the year for the relief programme amounted to $22.6 million which, added to the $0.4 million in miscellaneous income, made available $23 million for relief services. As a result of the under-subscription of funds for the regular relief budget, it was obviously impossible to undertake the services provided for in the supplementary relief budget. Regarding self-support projects, small expenditures were required in respect of the Jordan and Sinai projects; on education and small-scale projects, $8.8 million was spent. Governmental contributions to the rehabilitation fund, from which education as well as small-scale projects are financed, amounted to $1 million during the year. Miscellaneous income applicable to rehabilitation purposes was slightly more than $0.1 million.

90. There was thus a deficit both on relief and on rehabilitation account. This deficit was met by drawing on working capital. The serious consequences of this necessary action will be discussed below.41/

FISCAL PERIOD 1956-1957

91. During the year under review, the Agency's budget for the subsequent fiscal period was prepared. As reported to the tenth session of the General Assembly,42/ the Agency is taking steps to make its fiscal period coincide with the calendar year; and therefore the budget now submitted covers the eighteen months period from 1 July 1956 to 31 December 1957.

92. For the eighteen-month fiscal period beginning 1 July 1956, a relief budget of $43.4 million has been established. Of this amount, $13.9 million is budgeted for the first six-month period beginning 1 July 1956; $29.5 million is budgeted for the calendar year 1957. The budget for the calendar year 1957 includes an amount of $1.6 million in respect of certain special items referred to in annex F, including three of those provided for in the supplementary relief budget for 1955-1956. With the exception of the special items, the relief budget merely provides for the continuation of existing programmes under normal conditions of operation. It can readily be seen that the relief budget as a whole is rigid, and cannot be materially reduced, apart from major decisions regarding changes in relief policy.

93. The budget for self-support purposes can be divided into that part of which continuation at a certain level is implicit in past decisions and in the nature of the operations themselves--the education system, existing agricultural projects, the placement service, community and crafts centres--for which $17 million is budgeted for the eighteen months, and that other part covering work which could, in a dire emergency, be stopped or which has not yet started. This latter work includes the building of new schools and vocational training centres, new agricultural projects and the loans and grants programmes: that is to say, those parts of the self-support activities which in fact are most constructive, appreciated and successful. For that purpose, $5 million is budgeted.
WORKING CAPITAL

94. The Agency's theoretical working capital is the difference between its assets, which include goods in stock, claims and accounts receivable as well as cash, and its liabilities. That working capital, less the non-cash assets, represents the working capital available for future commitments. On 30 June 1955, total theoretical working capital was $35 million, and available working capital was $20 million, of which $18.5 million was ear-marked by the contributors for the rehabilitation fund. On 30 June 1956, total working
capital was $27.2 million, but available working capital had fallen to $14.3 million, $10.1 million of which was similarly ear-marked for the rehabilitation fund. At current rates of expenditure, the available capital would last the Agency less than six months. The difficulties resulting from shortage of capital were mentioned in last year's annual report,43/ but the requested increase in working capital was not provided.

95. In addition to the dangerously small figure for available working capital, the high proportion of it ear-marked for self-support raises difficulties. In the past, it has been the Agency's practice, as reported to the General Assembly 44/ at its tenth session, to finance its relief services from the rehabilitation fund during the early months of each fiscal period before contributions to the relief fund are paid. This is rapidly becoming no longer possible, partly because the cash available is diminishing and partly because contributions to the relief fund have been less than relief expenditures. As the Agency does not know, before the end of any fiscal period, what the total relief contributions during that year are going to be, it assumes that funds will be forthcoming and accordingly temporarily uses rehabilitation funds. The latter fund, however, is in the nature of a trust fund; and the Director will soon find himself in the position of having to borrow from it more than he expects to be able to pay back, unless he can receive firmer assurances than he has been able to obtain heretofore that the relief budget will in fact be fully subscribed.
CONTRIBUTIONS

96. For the eighteen months beginning 1 July 1956, relief contributions amounting to $43 million are required after taking into account probable miscellaneous income. The experience of the year under review is that, unless some special efforts are made, contributions are likely to be less than $36 million ($24 million for a twelve-month period), leaving a likely deficit of $7 million or more. Small economies here and there in existing operations will be totally inadequate to reduce this deficit, which can only be prevented by a substantial increase in contributions or by the cutting of major parts of the Agency's services.

97. For the self-support programme, including education, contributions amounting to $22 million are needed. As a result of large contributions to the rehabilitation fund made in earlier years, it has not been necessary for some time to request funds for this purpose as a matter of urgency. This year, however, contributions must be made if the programme is to continue.

98. In considering the Agency's financial position and its urgent need for adequate funds, it is vitally important to bear in mind the fact that, for the sake of the refugees' very subsistence, the greater part of the Agency's work has to be carried on continuously, without any interruption. Although the budget is expressed in terms of dollars, it must be looked upon as representing essential goods (so many tons of flour or rice, such and such types of medical supplies, so many shelters, so many tires, pencils and school desks) and essential services (so many doctors, nurses, school teachers, drivers, warehousemen, sanitation workers, etc.). It is illusory to think that a budget figure for one year is necessarily an accurate gauge of what that figure should be for the next year. The Agency's duty is to think in terms of what it must provide to the refugees--hence, when prices and costs rise, the contributions must increase even if the Agency is to maintain just an even level of services. Added to this, however, is the further vitally important fact that the natural increase in the number of the refugees means more mouths to feed, more hospital beds, more doctors and nurses, more shelters, more schools and more of various incidental services.

99. In the light of these circumstances, the Director must place before the General Assembly, in the most solemn and serious manner, a request for urgent action to ensure that adequate funds are made available in sufficient time to cover the Agency's operations as outlined in the present report. If such funds are not made available, the Agency will be forced to make severe cuts in its services. The Director does not consider that such cuts should be made. Existing standards are not adequate. In view, therefore, of its humanitarian and political implications, he submits the problem to the Assembly as the ultimate responsibility, for the Agency's actions must rest with that body, and requests its decision.

V. SUMMARY CONCLUSIONS

100. During the period under review, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency has carried on the work assigned to it by the General Assembly under particularly difficult conditions. While it is believed that the Agency's work in the field of relief and in education was performed as satisfactorily as available funds and local conditions permitted, the results obtained in the field of self-support were greatly curtailed by political factors. The ability of the Agency to continue carrying out its work in all fields will depend upon the funds made available to it, upon the attitude and co-operation of both the refugees and the host Governments, and upon the political conditions in the area of operations.

101. The work of the Agency must, in the very nature of things, be considered against the political background of the Palestine question, to which the refugee problem is inextricably linked. As has been demonstrated by events, the passage of time has not been a healing force. Quite to the contrary. Today, as one year ago, the strongest feeling, vocally and bitterly expressed by the great mass of the refugees, is the demand to return to their old homes. The refugees are, in general, supported in this claim by the Arab
Governments.

102. In the absence of an acceptable solution of the Palestine question, the great mass of the refugees has remained opposed to the development of large-scale projects for self-support, which they erroneously link with permanent resettlement and the abandonment of hopes for repatriation. On the other hand, some individual refugees, as well as a number of host government officials, realize that--whatever the ultimate solution of the Palestine problem may be--self-support projects are in the long-term interests of refugees and Governments alike, and their co-operation has enabled UNRWA to achieve limited progress in this field. It must be emphasized, however, that in the long run only the open and active support of the host Governments concerned can enable the Agency to develop projects offering substantial opportunities for self-support to a large number of refugees.

103. Regardless of future developments and changes in the political situation, it is apparent that for several years to come there will be a need for relief in some form in some of the areas where the Agency now operates. The longer a solution of the Palestine question acceptable to all parties concerned is delayed, the longer will relief be required.

104. Assuming that the General Assembly wishes the Agency to continue to provide services to the refugees, it is important that the extent and scope of those services be reviewed by the Assembly in the light of the financial and other difficulties encountered by UNRWA in its operations, that the Assembly decide what should be the extent of UNRWA's responsibilities, and that clear directives be given as to the lines the Assembly wishes the Agency to follow in future (see para. 84).

105. It will be particularly necessary to have the Assembly's directives on such matters as:

(a) The standard of relief services to be provided, especially as regards nutrition, shelter and health (see paras. 24, 33, 40 and 47 to 51 above);

(b) The extent, if any, to which the Agency's education programme should be expanded to care for numbers of students in secondary classes over and above those provided for under the existing system (see para. 60 above);

(c) Whether the Assembly wishes to reimburse the host Governments for the full cost to them of educating in government schools qualified refugee students who cannot within the limits of existing resources be accommodated in Agency schools (see para. 61 above);

(d) Whether the Assembly wishes to approve, in principle, a programme of public and other works for the Gaza strip, the primary objective of which would be to give temporary occupation to refugees (see para. 72 above);

(e) Whether the Assembly is prepared to extend the Agency's mandate so as to permit it to encourage the general economic development of the host countries in ways that will indirectly benefit the refugees (see para. 73 above);

(f) Whether the Assembly wishes the Agency to expand its rolls by:

(i) Providing rations for the children in Jordan in the absence of government action to remove ineligible persons from the rolls (see para. 14 above);

(ii) Providing relief services generally to several thousand refugees who were not registered with the Agency in the past, but who have gradually used up their resources and are now in great need (see para. 12 above).

106. No matter what responsibilities are assigned to the Agency in future, it is of the utmost importance that necessary measures be taken by the Assembly to ensure that adequate funds are made available to the Agency--and in sufficient time--to enable it to carry out those responsibilities in the most economical manner and to meet its obligations as they
arise.

107. Similarly, to the extent that the General Assembly (including the host Governments) wishes the Agency to carry on operations, it is of the utmost importance that the Governments of the host countries give their full and open support and co-operation to the Agency.



ANNEXES

(note: Tables may not appear as they do on screen when printed.)


ANNEX A

REFUGEE STATISTICS

Table 1

NUMBER OF REFUGEES AND RATIONS DISTRIBUTEDa


June 1950
June 1951
June 1952
June 1953
June 1954
June 1955
June 1956
Refugees
Rations
Refugees
Rations
Refugees
Rations
Refugees
Rations
Refugees
Rations
Refugees
Rations
Refugees
Rations
Gaza
Jordan
Lebanon
Syria
Israel
198,227
506,200 127,600
82,194
45,800
188,227 503,423 129,041
82,824
45,800
199,789
465,741 106,896
82,861
24,380
197,233 444,403 106,068
80,499
23,434
204,356 469,576 104,901
84,224
19,616
198,427 438,775
99,903
80,674
17,176
208,560 475,620 102,095
85,473
b
199,465 431,012
97,324
79,819
b
212,600 486,631 101,636
86,191
b
207,037 443,464 100,056
83,233
b
214,601 499,606 103,600
88,179
b
208,674 441,371 101,272
84,611
b
216,971 512,706 102,625
89,977
b
213,056
437,855
101,056
85,810
b
TOTAL960,021 949,315 879,667 851,637 882,673 834,955 971,748807,620887,058833,790905,986835,928922,279837,777
a/ The number of rations shown has been corrected to the equivalent of full rations, as some registered refugees receive no dry rations and others (some frontier villagers) receive half rations. Before the eighth session of the General Assembly, children under seven years old and certain Bedouins also received half rather than full rations.

b/ No longer under UNRWA responsibility.

Table 2
DISTRIBUTION OF REFUGEES ACCORDING TO AGE AND COUNTRY OF RESIDENCE AS AT 30 JUNE 1956


0-1 years
1-15 years
15 years and over
Number of families
Gaza
Jordan
Lebanon
Syria

TOTAL
3,112
10,693
1,800
3,426

19,031
96,494
229,347
47,795
40,172

413,808
117,365
272,666
53,030
46,379

489,440
40,677
99,576
23,373
21,416

185,042
Table 3

NUMBER OF REFUGEES IN CAMPS ACCORDING TO COUNTRY

June 1950
June 1951
June 1952
June 1953
June 1954
June 1955
June 1956
Gaza
Jordan
Lebanon
Syria

TOTAL
95,000
110,655
28,799
33,144

267,598
102,586
115,867
34,363
23,478

276,294
90,670
134,588
36,881
18,989

281,128
81,367
145,962
37,236
17,698

282,263
96,500
153,967
37,333
17,830

305,630
124,107
153,250
38,670
19,725

335,752
129,741
167,364
42,494
19,082

358,681
Number in camps as a percentage of the total num- ber of registered refugees
29.3%
32.3%
32.6%
32.4%
34.4%
37.1%
38.9%


ANNEX B

HEALTH SERVICES

1. ORGANIZATION AND STAFF

1. The organization of the Agency's health services has remained substantially unchanged during the fiscal period 1955-1956. The World Health Organization, by agreement with the Agency, continues to be responsible for the technical direction of these services by designating and providing certain of the senior staff, including the Chief Medical Officer of the Agency.

2. Table 1 below shows the number of staff working in the Agency's health services (including persons seconded by WHO) as at 30 June 1956. During the period under review, the number of doctors and of all categories of nurses was increased. The category "others" under the heading "area staff" includes administrative, clerical, laboratory, pharmaceutical and supply personnel as well as sanitary, supplementary feeding and milk distribution personnel above the labour category. Also during the year, a number of posts in the former category were transferred to the labour category. The table does not include the hundreds of workers employed in hospitals subsidized by the Agency, which also provide services to refugees.
Table 1

Headquarters
Lebanon
Syria
Jordan
Gaza
Total
International staff
Doctors
Nurses
Sanitation officers
Nutritionist
Health educator
Administration
Supply and materials
officer (medical)
4
1
1
1
1
1

1
1
1
0
0
0
0

0
1
1
0
0
0
0

0
1
2
0
0
0
0

0
1
1
0
0
0
0

0
8
6
1
1
1
1

1
SUB-TOTAL 19
Area staff
Doctors
Dentists
Nurses
Nursing auxiliaries
Sanitation officers
Laboratory technicians
Pharmacists
Food supervisors
Others:
Medical
Sanitation
Supplementary
feeding/milk
0
0
1
0
0
0
1
0

20
1

0
19
1
18
45
1
2
1
1

20
24

27
18
2
16
38
2
2
2
1

14
6

8
50
7
48
192
2
2
2
1

54
20

13
17
1
17
69
1
1
1
1

49
85

38
104
11
100
344
6
7
7
4

157
136

86
SUB-TOTAL 962
Labour category
Medical
Sanitation
Supplementary
feeding/milk
1
0

0
28
107

123
48
62

111
114
475

565
82
452

219
273
1,096

1,018
SUB-TOTAL 2,387

GRAND TOTAL 3,368


2. CLINICS, HOSPITALS AND LABORATORIES

3. The number of clinics and out-patient departments operated or utilized by the Agency remained unchanged at a total of ninety during the period under review. But refugee movements and the opening and closing of camps in Lebanon caused some clinics to be closed and some new ones opened. Civil disturbances in Jordan temporarily interrupted clinic services in some areas. Efficiency of treatment has been improved by the introduction into Jordan and Syria of the system, which has operated satisfactorily in Gaza and Lebanon, of registering each patient on an individual card; this system will eventually be adopted in all clinics.

4. The following table shows the number of visits paid to the Agency's clinics during the reporting period:

Table 2
Description
Lebanon
Syria
Jordan
Gaza
Total
Population served by
medical services a/
General medical cases
Dressings and skin
Eye cases
Dental
102,000

365,984
220,798
240,324
23,777

850,883
89,000

372,737
215,235
108,666
19,321

715,959
426,000

637,181
919,255
1,039,758
19,882

2,616,076
270,000b/

567,069
578,769
653,875
12,846

1,812,559
887,000

1,942,971
1,934,057
2,042,623
75,826

5,995,477
a/ Figures show the number of refugees and residents served by the Agency's medical services and do not represent the total numbers of refugees in the respective countries.

b/ Includes services to refugees by the Public Health Department and the Red Crescent in Gaza, as well as services by the Agency to Gaza non-refugees.


5. The number of hospital beds maintained by or reserved for the Agency decreased from 2,302 in June 1955 to 2,241 in June 1956. This decrease was mainly due, as is seen in paragraph 6 below, to the withdrawal of beds in Syria and the temporary reduction of the
numbers of beds in Lebanon consequent on planned improvements in the Agency's services for tuberculosis patients. The changes in the different countries were as follows:


6. In Gaza, a new children's ward of twenty-eight beds was opened during April in the Agency's tuberculosis hospital at Bureij. A new X-ray apparatus was provided for that hospital by the Swiss Government. The Red Crescent Hospital, in which beds are reserved for the Agency, was damaged by shelling on 5 April, but has been repaired. In Jordan, the Government Hospital in Jericho, which also is used and therefore largely supported by the Agency, moved into newly-built premises during October 1955. A special paediatric team of the Save the Children Fund shortly afterwards undertook the medical direction of twenty children's beds there. In Lebanon, as the Director reported to the tenth session of the General Assembly, the Agency had been planning to close its tented tuberculosis hospital near Sidon; this was done in October 1955. Some of the patients were discharged and those who needed continuing hospital treatment were transferred to the private sanatorium where a new wing is being built by the Agency. That new wing will contain considerably more beds than the Agency's old Sidon hospital. In May 1956, a new eight-bed maternity ward was opened in the Agency's camp hospital at Nahr el Bared, near Tripoli. In Syria, at the request of the Government, the twenty-two-bed wing operated by the Agency in the hospital at Dera'a was returned to the Government Health Department in January 1956. In Nairab Camp, Aleppo, a new building was constructed to accommodate the maternity and children's section of the medical unit there.

7. Laboratory services continued to be provided by subsidized private laboratories, by governmental, or by Agency-operated laboratories. In Jordan, owing to the strain on the government laboratory in Jerusalem, a special technician has been provided by the Agency to the laboratory for the purpose of examining specimens submitted in respect of refugees.
3. MATERNAL AND CHILD HEALTH

8. Attendance at the Agency's maternity clinics increased from 103,610 during the reporting period 1954-1955 to 123,089 for the period at present under review. This increase is thought to be partly due to the introduction, in July 1955, of a special issue of supplementary rations for pregnant and nursing women. Monthly attendance at the clinics is the rule except towards the end of pregnancy when attendance may be at two-weekly or one-weekly intervals. Thus, regular medical and nursing supervision is provided until delivery, which in normal cases usually takes place either in the home or in camp maternity centres; hospital care is normally reserved for complicated cases. During pregnancy, simple health instructions are given in preparation for delivery, and either a ready-made layette or materials from which a layette can be made by the mother herself are provided. A blood test for syphilis is taken at the first attendance; if it is positive, an adequate course of treatment is instituted, and the family members are also investigated for evidence of the disease. When the number of sero-positive women is 5 per cent or over of those attending the clinic the whole family of each sero-positive woman is treated with penicillin. Where the number is lower than 5 per cent, only those family members with positive blood reaction are treated. Of the 20,376 blood tests carried out on pregnant women during the twelve months under review, 362 were positive, that is, 1.28 per cent.

9. There were 465,009 attendances at infant health clinics during the period under review (monthly average 38,751) whereas there had been 424,242 in the previous period. The issue through the infant health clinics of authority for special supplementary rations for nursing mothers for a twelve-month period after delivery is considered, as in the case of the maternity clinics, to have been a powerful stimulus to increased attendance. In these clinics advice is given to the mothers on the care of infants and young children, their diet, personal hygiene and clothing. Prophylactic immunizations against smallpox, diphtheria and enteric group fevers are also given. Beneficiaries for supplementary feeding in the 0-2 age group are also selected through these clinics.

10. With the establishment of additional teams in Jordan and Gaza, the number of school health teams has now been increased to eight (four in Jordan, two in Gaza and one each in Lebanon and Syria). Each consists of a medical officer, a trained nurse, a clerk and a driver.

11. Under the school health service, each school child is medically examined on entry and on leaving school. Children requiring medical treatment are referred to the nearest Agency clinic for attention, and are re-examined periodically by the school health team. School teachers are also examined to ensure that they are free from tuberculosis or other infectious conditions that might render them a danger to the pupils under their care.

12. During the period under review, 32,183 schoolchildren and 997 teachers in Agency schools were fully examined. There was some interruption of the service during January, February and March 1956 while a number of the school medical officers were engaged in the nutrition survey.
4. NUTRITION

13. The calorie value of the basic ration supplied to refugees continued unchanged throughout the year at about 1,500 calories per day in summer and about 1,600 calories in winter and with a total vegetable protein content of 41.7 and 44.2 grammes respectively. The constituents also remained unchanged, except that burghol because of its high cost was eliminated and replaced by rice.

14. With effect from 1 July 1955, a special monthly supplementary issue of dry rations having the value of 500 calories per day has been issued to all women from the beginning of the fifth month of pregnancy to the end of the twelfth month after delivery. In addition, all children up to the age of fifteen years, as well as pregnant and nursing women, are entitled to a daily issue of liquid milk. Fish oil capsules are issued daily to all children through infant health centres, supplementary feeding centres and schools. Further, a hot meal is provided six days weekly to refugees certified on medical grounds as being in need of supplementary feeding. This daily meal is usually provided initially for a period of three months, and is continued, if a medical examination at the end of that period shows that the beneficiary still needs it. Non-hospitalized pulmonary tuberculosis patients continue to receive double basic rations.

15. During the year, several new supplementary feeding centres, infant feeding centres and milk centres were built in an effort to reach persons who were not yet beneficiaries of these services. The school milk programme has expanded, particularly in those countries where the teachers appreciate its value. The receipt of United States agricultural surplus commodities and gifts of food from voluntary societies have made possible the maintenance of the standard of the supplementary meals; this would otherwise have been difficult, since fresh food has become more expensive. Hospitals and non-hospitalized tuberculosis patients
have also benefited from these contributions.

16. A decision was taken in the autumn of 1955 to invite WHO to conduct a survey of the nutrition of refugees. The survey was begun during December 1955 and was finished by the end of March 1956. It was conducted under the direction of two WHO experts who used the services of some of the Agency's staff, particularly doctors of the school health service, and consisted of two parts: a clinical survey, involving the physical examination of some 5,400 refugees and of a number of non-refugees as controls; and a survey of the dietetic habits of the refugees by means of a detailed study of the actual items of food consumed in the homes of 400 families during a period of several days. The information obtained from the survey is still in the hands of the experts.
5. COMMUNICABLE DISEASES CONTROL

17. Epidemiology. No case of the treaty diseases (plague, cholera, yellow fever, smallpox, typhus and louse-borne relapsing fever) occurred among the refugees during the year. The cases of relapsing fever reported are considered, on epidemiological grounds, to be tick-borne infections. The infectious diseases recorded among the refugees during the period 12 June 1955 to 9 June 1956 are listed in the following table:

Table 3

Population a/
Lebanon
102,000
Syria
89,000
Jordan
426,000
Gaza
270,000
Total
887,000
Plague
Cholera
Yellow fever Smallpox
Typhus (louse-borne)
Typhus (endemic)
Relapsing fever
Diphtheria
Measles
Whooping cough
Chicken pox
Mumps
Meningitis
Poliomyelitis
Typhoid (Para A&B)
Dysentery
Malaria
Bilharziasis
Ancylostomiasis
Trachoma
Conjunctivitis
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
6
2,204
2,641
489
600
9
1
153
29,667
463
1
122
16,737
29,002
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
2
476
555
113
151
2
2
212
27,740
673
-
-
3,694
17,379
0
0
0
0
0
0
39
30
1,790
779
1,060
1,041
21
18
154
17,228
8,109
2
-
134,221
116,168
0
0
0
0
0
0
3
0
5,582
4,090
1,456
534
8
-
167
25,536
42
103
683
17,799
35,675
0
0
0
0
0
0
43
38
10,052
8,065
3,118
2,326
40
21
686
100,171
9,287
106
805
172,451
198,224
a/ These figures represent the number of refugees whether registered or not and also residents (as in Gaza) concerning whom UNRWA's field health officers obtain records of the incidence of infectious diseases. The balance of Gaza residents at risk are reported on by the Gaza Public Health Department.


18. Dysentery and eye diseases continued to be the most prevalent infections, particularly during summer when there are more flies. A noticeable further reduction compared to previous years in the enteric group fever cases is attributed to prophylactic inoculations and the provision of safe water supplies. Clinical malaria cases dropped to practically half (from 18,035 last year to 9,287 this year) due again to extensive malaria control measures. Immunization of susceptibles against diphtheria and whooping cough has helped to keep the incidence of these diseases low.

19. Immunization. Mass immunization campaigns against smallpox, diphtheria and enteric group fevers were carried out, and inoculation against whooping cough was instituted among young children in those areas where whooping cough was prevalent. In all, 342,272 inoculations and vaccinations against these diseases were given during the period under review.

20. Tuberculosis control. This programme is based on tuberculosis clinics established by the Agency in the main centres of refugee population, where diagnostic facilities and facilities for the supervision and treatment of ambulatory patients are available, and on
hospital accommodation for the patients who need isolation, closer supervision, more specialized attention or surgical treatment. The clinics are served in each host country by a special tuberculosis medical officer and his staff.

21. The opening of a new ward in Bureij Hospital, Gaza, has been mentioned above. In Jordan, a new dispensary has been established at Zerka, and arrangements have been made for the extension of facilities for sputum culture in the Government Hospital, Jerusalem. In Lebanon, the Agency's 150-bed wing at a private sanatorium at Bhannes is under construction, and a campaign of BCG vaccination is envisaged, as part of the extension of the vaccination programme. The Syrian Government has made beds available in the Ibn Rushd Sanatorium for cases from the Agency's tuberculosis detention post in Nairab Camp, Aleppo;
closure of the post has thus been made possible.

22. At the Agency's invitation, a survey of its tuberculosis programme in all four host countries was made by the WHO senior tuberculosis adviser to the Governments of Jordan and Lebanon, starting in December 1955. Improvements and developments in the Agency's services for the control of tuberculosis have been planned in the light of his recommendations. These concern principally the establishment of a registration system which will permit regular surveillance of the patients so as to ensure not only their continued treatment but also tracing of contacts and a diminution of public health dangers. The number of staff engaged on this work will also be increased, and it is possible that there may be need for an increase in the number of tuberculosis hospital beds in Jordan where the possibility of establishing a second tuberculosis hospital of 100 beds is under review.

23. Malaria control. The following table summarizes the Agency's anti-malaria activities during the year under review:

Table 4

Country
Residual spraying campaigns
Camps
sprayed
Villages
sprayed
Square metres
sprayed
Population
protected
Cost per head
in $ US
Lebanon
Syria
Jordan
12
13
1
-
36
19
778,371
603,536
1,637,498
42,528
31,403
73,421
0.03
0.06
0.04
Larvicidal campaign (Jordan)

Estimated number of square metres oiled during period
April-November 1955 inclusive
Number of litres DDT-pure resin-solar oil (2.5 per cent DDT
and 2 per cent resin)
Drainage (Jordan)

Number of linear metres cleared
Number of cubic metres dug as drains
Number of square metres dried
54,696,765

137,449



20,800
16,998
1,319,220

24. The greatest problem facing the Agency as regards malaria control has been in Jordan, where the Jordan and Yarmuk Valleys were once the most hyperendemic zones. There, large-scale control measures, directly supervized by the Agency's epidemiologist, constitute the Yarmuk-Jordan anti-malaria project, which was originally confined to the two river valleys but which during the year under review was extended to include the adjoining valleys and hills; it had become apparent that some of the infections among refugees in the area were being contracted in the adjoining uncontrolled parts. The campaign itself is based on a weekly larviciding of all breeding surfaces, supplemented by residual spraying of premises whenever circumstances warrant such action.

25. Epidemiological investigations carried out in the area of the Yarmuk-Jordan anti-malaria project during the year revealed that no infection occurred among 511 infants under the age of one year whose blood smears were microscopically examined for malarial parasites. A total of 2,768 blood films taken from schoolchildren of the project area revealed an over-all parasite rate of 3.3 per cent only. Corresponding figures for the year 1954-1955 were 9.6 per cent and 1953-1954, 14.3 per cent.

26. In other parts of Jordan, Lebanon and Syria, the Agency's sanitation staff under the technical direction of the epidemiologist carry out control measures both in and around the organized refugee camps as well as in villages where refugees form a high proportion of the population.

27. The percentage incidence of malaria during the malaria season--July to December --is obtained from the records of all the Agency's policlinics. The table below shows the drop in the incidence year after year, being most marked in the year under review:

Table 5

Country
July
August
September
October
November
December
Lebanon
1952-53
1953-54
1954-55
1955-56

Syria
1952-53
1953-54
1954-55
1955-56

East Jordan
1952-53
1953-54
1954-55
1955-56

West Jordan
1952-53
1953-54
1954-55
1955-56

Gaza
1952-53
1953-54
1954-55
1955-56
1.5
1.2
0.4
0.18


0.8
0.4
1.3
0.54


10.6
8.5
3.0
1.96


4.6
2.1
2.2
1.24


0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
1.2
1.5
0.2
0.18


0.7
3.4
1.9
0.68


6.4
8.3
3.0
1.8


5.4
2.4
1.5
1.2


0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
1.3
1.5
0.3
0.18


1.0
2.6
1.5
0.80


10.5
7.5
3.9
1.7


5.0
2.7
1.4
0.86


0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
1.4
1.5
0.3
0.19


1.4
3.4
2.5
1.0


13.0
8.3
4.1
1.9


4.5
2.4
1.8
1.1


0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
1.6
0.8
0.3
0.16


1.4
1.9
1.4
0.5


18.5
6.0
3.5
2.3


5.6
2.2
1.7
1.1


0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
1.1
0.5
0.2
0.07


0.9
1.0
0.5
0.18


12.7
5.1
2.2
1.5


4.4
1.0
1.6
0.8


0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
6. ENVIRONMENTAL SANITATION

28. Water supplies. Low winter rainfall caused a drought in the summer of 1955 which resulted in water shortages especially in Jordan; one camp in Syria was also affected. In anticipation of the shortages, the Agency had augmented its fleet of tankers and had loaned eight tankers to the Government of Jordan for help to refugees and non-refugees alike. This matter was reported in the last annual report of the Director to the General Assembly of the United Nations.[sp,sm:45] Considerable improvement has been made in water supplies during the period under review, particularly in Gaza where better control at lower cost has been obtained. In Jordan, however, the assistance of the Government has been requested so that certain necessary improvements can be made to water supplies for the camps near Jericho.

29. Excreta and refuse disposal. Construction of septic latrines and of permanent garbage dumps continued throughout the year, the former replacing the old fly-breeding pit-latrines to a great extent. Bathing facilities have also been increased and a further expansion is planned for the coming year.

30. Shelter. In Jordan, a hut-building programme to replace tents began in 1956, and during the period under review one new camp was completed near Amman to accommodate refugees who had been living in poor shelter in the city. In Lebanon, three new camps were opened and two old camps were closed. One temporary tented camp was established near
Tyre for the accommodation of refugees moved by the Lebanese authorities from Anjar Camp and certain villages along the South Lebanon border. In Syria, cash grants have been given to refugees for hut construction and have proved to be very effective.

31. Insect control. This programme was devoted mainly to controlling insects of medical importance, such as mosquitoes, flies, lice and ticks, and as a result, the incidence of insect-borne diseases was kept at a reasonably low level. Because they cause discomfort, bed-bugs and fleas were dealt with as far as possible.

32. Fly control measures were continued by routine treatment with insecticides of fly-breeding sites in camps from April to November. As DDT and other allied insecticides are now becoming ineffective against flies due to development of resistance, a mixture containing a phosphated insecticide (Diazinon) together with DDT, chlordane and dieldrin in suitable proportions was used instead. A space spray containing Lindane was also used in the feeding centres and clinics. However, the use of insecticides alone cannot produce a sufficient effect on flies; in addition, good sanitation and intensive health education among the refugees are necessary and are part of the Agency's programme.

33. Regular delousing campaigns are carried out among all the refugees in the camps each winter and periodically among the highly infested Bedouin communities in an attempt to keep the refugee population free from louse-borne typhus and relapsing fever. No case of these infections has occurred among the refugees within the past three years. In a series of tests conducted on body-lice to determine effectiveness of the common insecticide powders, it was observed that some degree of resistance in the lice to DDT is now apparent, whereas gamma BHC and pyrethrins were still found to be fully effective.
7. PUBLIC HEALTH NURSING

34. The nursing services continue to make a major contribution to the Agency's programme of preventive health services especially in the maternal and child health field, in tuberculosis control and in health education. To as wide an extent as possible home visiting is also being carried out, though time and the distances involved do not favour a full development of this activity. A full part is also played in the immunization campaigns and when special measures have to be taken to control outbreaks of diseases such as whooping cough among infants and the younger age-groups.

35. A staff of 106 nurses and 344 nursing auxiliaries is provided by the Agency for the care of the sick in clinics and hospitals as well as for the various preventive services mentioned above. In this number are not included the large number of nursing staff employed in hospitals and clinics subsidized by the Agency.
8. HEALTH EDUCATION OF THE PUBLIC

36. The training scheme of health education workers sponsored jointly by UNRWA and WHO was concluded on 15 November 1955. All persons trained under the scheme were employed by the Agency in the promotion of better health and sanitary practices.

37. From a survey now being made, it is evident that the Agency's medical, social welfare and teaching staff are paying more attention to the protection and maintenance of health by educating the refugee population. This is being emphasized by nurses in the maternal and child-health and ante-natal clinics, and the importance of cleanliness is being taught by sanitation workers, teachers in classrooms, and social workers during their routine visits to homes. As a result, the refugees now live in cleaner surroundings; mothers bring their children to the clinics at the onset of illness; and the ante-natal and maternal clinics are being used much more. Schoolchildren are cleaner, and the inhabitants of the camps co-operate in carrying out instructions with regard to cleanliness. More people willingly accept immunization, now that they understand its value.

38. Vacancies in health education have arisen because some workers have emigrated or accepted better-paid jobs. Efforts are being made to fill these posts with candidates who are as well qualified as the present group of workers. There are at present no plans for increasing the number of health education workers employed by the Agency. But plans are being made to expand the programme by utilizing the services of other staff members of the Agency, and it is hoped that they will be put into effect during the coming year.
9. MEDICAL EDUCATION AND TRAINING

39. The following table shows the continuation of the training programme of para- medical staff:

Table 6

Project
Location
Length of
training
Number qualified
Courses completed during year under review
Health education
General nursing
General nursing
General nursing

Mental nursing

Ophthalmic medical
orderlies
Ophthalmic medical
orderlies
Ophthalmic medical
orderlies
Childbirth attendants
UNRWA headquarters
School of Nursing, Jerusalem
Baptist Hospital, Gaza
National School of Nursing,
Beirut
Asfouriyeh Mental Hospital,
Beirut
UNRWA, Lebanon

St. John's Ophthalmic Hospital,
Jerusalem
UNRWA, Gaza

Rimal Maternity Centre, Gaza
1 year
3 years
3 years

3 years

2 years
6 weeks


3 months
3 months

9 months
10
15
4
1

7

22

6

72

71
Courses in operation
Health education
Public health nursing
General nursing
General nursing
General nursing
General nursing
General nursing

Mental nursing

Ophthalmic medical
orderlies
Tuberculosis
X-ray technicians
American University, Beirut
American University, Beirut
England
School of Nursing, Jordan
Baptist Hospital, Gaza
El Makassed Hospital, Beirut
Syrian University Hospital,
Damascus
Asfouriyeh Mental Hospital,
Beirut
St. John's Ophthalmic
Hospital, Jerusalem
Hamlin Sanatorium, Beirut
Augusta Victoria Hospital,
Jerusalem
11 months
11 months
3 years
3 years
3 years
2 years

4 years

3 years

3 months
2 years

1 year
1
1
18
20
12
1

1

1

6
6

4


40. The need for trained para-medical staff continues to be felt, particularly for general-trained nurses, and efforts are being made to interest suitably educated secondary school girls in entering the profession. There is, indeed, a world-wide shortage of nurses;
but the traditions of the region make its correction particularly difficult in the Near East.

41. Sixty-nine UNRWA scholarships in medicine, twenty in pharmacy, three for veterinarians, and three in dentistry are at present held by refugees at the universities in Egypt, Lebanon and Syria. During the period under review, eight holders of scholarships in medicine have completed their course of training successfully.

42. The Agency has again contributed to the costs of the Sixth Middle East Medical Assembly held in Beirut from 7 to 9 April 1955. Some seventy doctors from the Agency's staff and the staff of hospitals and institutions subsidized by the Agency attended the Assembly; a special section was devoted to nursing in which the Agency's nursing staff took part.

43. Clinical meetings and medical discussions continued to be held in Jordan, while several scientific papers on tuberculosis and its control have been reproduced and circulated among all the medical officers employed by the Agency.

44. World Health Day was observed by the Agency in the arrangement of a special exhibit showing its anti-malarial activities, in the exhibition of posters and in giving broadcast talks on the subject of the year "Destroy disease-carrying insects".
10. MEDICAL AND SANITARY SUPPLIES

45. Following the introduction at the end of the last review period of the new accounting system, the provisions of medical supplies has improved greatly during the past twelve months. In general, the situation is satisfactory though some delays in the procurement of individual items still occur. There are also difficulties in connexion with certain import licences. Dead stocks and slow-moving items have been disposed of. The new medical supply catalogue has been completed and was circulated to all concerned in February 1956.



ANNEX C

WELFARE


1. GENERAL

1. The Agency's welfare service continues to deal with many of the personal problems of the refugees and to help where possible to alleviate the unfortunate effects of refugee life. As mentioned in last year's report, it also assists individual cases of particular hardship that in one way or another are not provided for by the Agency's normal and rather standardized relief services. Welfare officers deal with groups in welfare and other centres as well as with refugees individually. A further and very important function is to serve as the Agency's point of contact with various voluntary agencies.
2. GROUP ACTIVITIES

2. The plan mentioned in last year's report for the construction of eight community centres has been carried out. Literacy campaigns, recreational activities, training in crafts such as tailoring, shoemaking, carpentry for men and sewing and domestic science for women, lectures, health education activities, film shows, scouting and girl guiding as well as other activities, form the programme of these centres.

3. The purely welfare work of the sewing centres continues along the same lines as last year. The work consists of mending donated clothing, making new clothes, including layettes, guides', scouts' and workers' uniforms. These articles have again been sold through bazaars and displays and the proceeds distributed among the workers. The sewing centres also continue to be a most useful means of encouraging the learning of reading and writing, arithmetic, house crafts, child care and so on. The following table shows the position with regard to these centres as at the end of June, 1956:

Table 1

Country
Number of
centres
Number of
members
Number of
instructors
Number of
classes
Lebanon
Syria
Jordan
Gaza
7
6
8
1
239
153
425
55
8
7
14
2
13
10
23
2
4. The arts and crafts project which is being operated in the four host countries, is developing successfully. At the end of June 1956, there were nineteen arts and crafts centres distributed as follows:

Table 2


Country
Number of
centres
Number of girls and
women employed
Lebanon
Syria
Gaza
Jordan
TOTALS
2
3
8
6
19
251
27
208
180
660


5. The aim of this project is twofold. First, to provide the girls and women with a useful occupation which may help towards building a normal life. Some of the workers receive complete training at these centres; others need only to be shown how to adapt their knowledge and skill to the requirements of the market. Secondly, the workers are able to become partly self-supporting and so help augment the family income and improve their standard of living.

6. In each of the host countries emphasis is placed on a particular type of product. Thus Gaza produces the traditional Arab-Palestinian cross-stitched designs on household linen, skirts and stoles, thereby keeping alive and putting to modern use an ancient skill and traditional designs. The centres in Jordan produce embroidery in silver and gold thread, "Crusader" jackets, capes, boleros and stoles with matching accessories. The centres in Lebanon produce embroidered dresses for women and girls, a colourful variety of embroidered linens and knitted clothing. Syria specializes in leatherwork: hassocks, handbags, soft slippers, cushion-covers and belts. The Agency provides the necessary materials and the workers are paid according to the amount of work they accomplish.

7. This project is partially self-supporting and is becoming progressively more so. Goods produced in the four countries have been sold both locally and through the marketing centre at UNRWA headquarters, Beirut, as well as through the UNRWA office in Cairo.

8. A special market survey of the United States has now been carried out with the help of the Lebanese Industry Institute. Contacts have been made, prices and type of article discussed, and samples sent to America.
3. CASE WORK

9. The Agency's welfare staff provides a point of contact for individual refugees having special needs and liaison with other departments of the administration.

10. As mentioned in last year's report, the Agency does not have its own institutions for the care and training of the physically handicapped, the orphan, the aged and the delinquent. Where such persons cannot be cared for by their own families, welfare officers endeavour to place them in existing institutions run by voluntary agencies or by the Governments of the host countries. Few of these institutions, even where accommodation is available, are able to meet the cost of cases drawn from the refugees. An expenditure of $100,000 was included in the budget for the year 1956-1957 in order to place 120 orphans and sixty-five physically handicapped young people in appropriate institutions, where they will be trained through simple crafts to become eventually self-supporting. This sum will provide for the full care of the 185 children over a period of not less than four years. It amounts to little more, over the full four-year period, than the cost of providing normal relief and educational services.

11. Reunion of families. During the year 1955, many persons have been reunited with their families, the majority of whom were situated in Gaza and joined families living in Jordan. The staff of the Welfare Division is responsible for arranging travel, accommodation en route, dealing with formalities, and the administration of allowances to cover expenses.
4. VOLUNTARY AGENCIES

12. Once again the Agency wishes to thank most sincerely all the voluntary agencies, both religious and secular, for their invaluable services to the refugees. Some of these services are supplementary to those provided by the Agency, others constitute virtually all such services the refugees receive--notably adult clothing.

13. The World Council of Churches and the International Missionary Council held, during the year, a second Beirut Conference on the problems of Arab refugees, at which current relief needs as well as future programmes were reviewed particularly in the light of paragraphs 5, 6, 7 and 9 of General Assembly resolution 916 (X) of 3 December 1955.

14. The Conference closed with the decision of the participating agencies not only to support, maintain and develop their existing programmes on behalf of the refugees, but to extend them to the greatest extent possible. In order to raise the funds needed, special attention will, it is understood, be given to the dissemination, through the various Church groups, of information concerning the situation and the needs of the refugees. Concerning the other claimants for relief described in the special report of the Director presented to the General Assembly pursuant to paragraph 6 of resolution 818 (IX)46/ --and to whom the private organizations were asked by the General Assembly to give increased assistance to the extent that local Governments could not do so 47/--the Conference was of the opinion that the size of the task was such that it could not recommend the large-scale and long-term relief programme which was necessary even for a minimal relief service.

15. Supplies given by various voluntary agencies have continued this year as in the past. The quantity of some items has increased appreciably since last year, while others have decreased. The gifts received during this past year, as compared with the previous year, are as follows:

Table 3

1954-1955
kilogrammes
1955-1956
kilogrammes
Clothing
Shoes
Blankets and bedding
Foodstuffs
Medical supplies
Miscellaneous
976,921
86,497
51,970
1,791,755
48,806
101,501
1,307,047
101,581
166,889
19,833
11,430
26,297

16. The increased gifts are evidence of the constant efforts of the voluntary agencies to promote amongst their members greater understanding of the refugees' needs. The decrease in foodstuffs may partly be attributed to technical difficulties associated with the
legislation relating to the United States surplus agricultural commodities. The decrease in medical supplies indicates improved co-operation between UNRWA and the voluntary agencies, as campaigns are now organized with more particular attention to items that are most needed.

17. It is impossible, in this short report, to describe the work done by each individual voluntary agency. The names of the voluntary agencies which one way or another contributed to the alleviation of the hardships of the Palestinian refugees are therefore merely listed, with an expression of deep appreciation for the efforts of each:

American Friends Service Committee
American Middle East Relief (AMER)
Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem
(Refugee Fund)
British Women's Voluntary Society
Canadian Lutheran World Relief
Catholic Relief Services, (NCWC)
Church World Service
Church Missionary Society (CMS)
Committee on Overseas Relief
United Church of Canada
Cooperative for American Remittances to
Everywhere (CARE)
Greek Orthodox Church--Beirut
Greek Orthodox Patriarchate--Jerusalem
Joint Christian Committee for Refugee
Work in Lebanon
Lutheran World Federation
Lutheran World Relief
Mennonite Central Committee
Near East Christian Council Committee (NECC)
Near East Foundation
New Zealand Council of Organizations for
Relief Services Overseas, Inc. (CORSO)
Oxford Committee for Famine Relief
Pontifical Mission for Palestine
Save the Children Fund
Southern Baptist Mission
Unitarian Service Committee of Canada
UNRWA Women's Auxiliary
World Relief Commission--National
Association of Evangelicals
Young Men's Christian Association
Young Women's Christian Association
18. Special mention should be made this year of the generous donations of various Red Cross societies, co-ordinated by the League of Red Cross Societies. The particular Red Cross societies which extended their help were the American, Australian, Belgian, British, Canadian, Dutch and South African. It should also be noted that the Girl Guides and Scouts through their World Bureaux have been sending gifts with great enthusiasm.
5. STAFF TRAINING

19. Welfare services are relatively new to the Near East and in order that the work described in the present annex should be carried on successfully, it was found necessary to devise means of training staff, particularly for field work. The task presents certain difficulties but the results so far achieved indicate that a continuing training programme will be necessary.


ANNEX D

SELF-SUPPORT PROGRAMMES

1. THE ECONOMIC BASIS OF SELF-SUPPORT

1. The economic basis necessary for the refugee to support himself and his family was mentioned in annex D to the last annual report. A shortage of jobs has continued to prevail throughout the Middle East, with the exception of Iraq, where there is increased employment due to economic expansion.

2. The Agency has continued, during the year under review, to survey the economic situation in the host countries and their development possibilities, with a view to relating its own self-support programme to the economic conditions in those countries. Some
of the results of this work were published in two issues of the Agency's Bulletin of Economic Development.48/

3. The first issue contains the results of a reconnaissance survey on the marketing of fruit and vegetables in the Arab Middle East. This regional survey is of great importance for the appraisal of cropping schemes in agricultural development projects, such as that in the Jordan Valley. It contains an analysis of recent trends in the marketing of fruit and vegetables. From this analysis, tentative conclusions on future marketing prospects can be reached (based on reasonable assumptions regarding, for example, the development of national income and of the population).

4. The second issue gives a factual analysis of the governmental budgets of Egypt, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria. The study shows that governmental receipts and expenditures in these countries have increased greatly during the last decade. Expenditures for economic and social services have shown the largest increase and now account for over one-half of total governmental expenditures. None the less, plans for economic development in all the Middle East countries covered by the survey are still restricted by lack of funds, except in Iraq, where oil royalties furnish an adequate source of capital.

5. The Agency's economic staff have also made a number of less extensive studies. These include, for example, studies on: the impact of the Agency's expenditures on the national economy of the host countries; the national income of the host countries and Israel; some theoretical aspects of investment requirements for refugee rehabilitation; the long range economic potential of Iraq; the introduction of a new income scale; the industrial and commercial section of the grants programme in Jordan; and the co-operation of the Gaza weavers in the programme to supply cloth for refugee children. The regular compilation of basic statistics regarding the Agency's operations was continued.

2. SELF-SUPPORT PROJECTS IN JORDAN
(a) General

6. During the year under review, the individual grants project (described below) has developed more rapidly than any other part of the Agency's self-support programme in Jordan. The other small projects, agricultural, housing and so on, have progressed. The Yarmuk-Jordan Valley project, however, does not appear to have moved any nearer to acceptance by the Governments concerned.
(b) Development of the Yarmuk and Jordan Valleys

7. The master plan for this project was submitted to the Agency by the contracting engineers in July 1955. Copies were sent to the Government of Jordan and to the other parties concerned. The project set out in this plan is for the utilization of the waters of the Yarmuk and Jordan rivers to irrigate 504,200 dunums 49/ in Jordan at an estimated cost of $108,720,000 and to supply 167 million kilowatt hours of electric power at an estimated cost of $53,119,000--a total estimated cost of $161,839,000 for the project. The plan envisages a storage dam on the Yarmuk River at Maqarin; a diversion dam on the Yarmuk River between Syria and Jordan at Adasiya; a channel for taking off excess water from the Yarmuk River to Lake Tiberias; an East Ghor canal fed from the Adasiya diversion dam and from Lake Tiberias; a West Ghor canal fed by syphon from the East Ghor canal; and four large hydro-electric plants on the Yarmuk River as well as two small plants on the East Ghor
canal.

8. It is estimated in the master plan that the project would support 224,000 workers and their families in the Jordan Valley; 160,000 directly from agriculture, and 64,000 from ancillary employment. This is 143,000 more than were employed in agriculture and ancillary occupations in the Jordan Valley in 1953.

9. The implementation of the master plan depends on inter-governmental agreements which have so far not been reached.

10. The Agency's Field Office in Jordan has, in the period under review, organized a survey of the land tenure situation in the Jordan Valley which gives a good insight into the present distribution of land ownership in the Valley, both as regards privately owned and State Domain lands.

11. The approach road which was built by the Agency to the proposed storage dam site of Maqarin was handed over to the Government of Jordan upon its completion, on 11 September 1955. The Government of Jordan has now assumed the entire responsibility for the road and its upkeep, in return for the transfer by the Agency to the Government of the unexpended balance of funds allowed for building the road, amounting to $72,603. The cost of the road to the Agency (including the balance transferred) was $515,760.

12. Details of the anti-malaria campaign which started in May, 1953, in the Yarmuk and Jordan Valleys are given in annex B above. To date the Agency has spent $202,339 out of the $404,207 allocated for this purpose and 10,164,808 square metres have been drained.
(c) Well drilling

13. The continuation of the exploratory well drilling, started last year in the areas of Merj Na'aja, Wadi Fara'a, and Bardala on the Western Ghor of the Jordan Valley, has confirmed the availability of large quantities of water, especially in the Merj Na'aja area. Because of these results, proposals are being prepared for extending the present agricultural project of Merj Na'aja, which now covers an area of 800 dunums, into a much larger project which will cover approximately 7,000 dunums. It is estimated that some 200 refugee agricultural families could thus become self-supporting at Merj Na'aja, in addition to the thirty refugee families now living in the area which is under development.
(d) Agricultural settlements

14. The Agency has not yet been able to settle the eighteen families at Kalonia near Jerusalem, where, it was stated in last year's report,50/ settlement was anticipated. This is due to the fact that the demarcation line was re-marked so much nearer to the settlement that the available agricultural land decreased from 900 to 450 dunums, of which 300 dunums now form part of the "no-man's land" corridor, so that their development is virtually impossible.

15. To date, the Agency has spent $208,139 on the El Hebeileh project and, after a long history of difficulties in establishing refugees in this area, seventy-nine families took advantage of the facilities granted and were moved there during the latter part of 1955. Cultivable land, undeveloped hill land, animals and equipment were distributed amongst them. In February 1956, contracts were awarded against tenders, and $128,919 of the sum mentioned above was spent for the construction of byres, bakeries and schools. So far, this project has resulted in the reduction of 460 rations from the relief rolls.

16. At the Jisr el Majameh settlement, the irrigation system has been finished and the construction of the thirty new housing units, intended for the thirty additional families mentioned in last year's report,51/ is nearing completion. The original settlers, who total forty families, have been given additional cash assistance because their crops were damaged by the severe drought which occurred in the summer of 1955 in the Jordan Valley.
(e) Livestock projects

17. During the year, two new agreements with the Jordan Government were signed. The first one was on 14 September 1955, whereby thirty-nine refugee Bedouin families who applied to the Agency for assistance to become self-supporting were given animals and fodder. These families were living on State Domain lands of the Bardala area; they were given fifteen sheep per capita and one camel per family, as well as the necessary fodder for one year and a cash grant in lieu of subsistence in the amount of $40 per registered refugee. This very successful project was completed on 31 March 1956, and the Agency's expenditure of $75,165 resulted in 171 refugees becoming self-supporting.

18. The second agreement was signed on 27 November 1955 and covered a project identical to the first, but for 250 refugee Bedouin families. The Agency reserved $546,713 for this project, which will involve approximately 37,000 sheep and 500 camels. Its implementation is going slowly because of difficulties in procuring livestock and in determining the extent to which the area where these families live can support such a large increase in animals. An assessment of the available grazing land is being undertaken and a study of the regulations concerning the import of the necessary livestock is being made.
(f) Urban housing

19. The building of low cost urban houses continues for those partially self- supporting refugees who could become entirely so if they did not have to pay rent. The forty-eight housing units on the Jebel Nazif on the outskirts of Amman, mentioned in last year's report 52/ were nearing completion at the end of June 1956. Bad weather conditions and last winter's disturbances in Amman account for the delay.

20. At the Sheikh Jarrah quarter, near Jerusalem, the twenty-eight housing units were completed and the selection of families is being finalized.

21. An agreement has now been concluded with the Government of Jordan for the purchase of land for similar projects, on the understanding that the cost of such land should not exceed 5 per cent of the total construction cost; in the Irbed district (East of the Jordan river) the Agency has purchased seventy-eight dunums.
(g) Development Bank of Jordan

22. The activities of the Bank have continued along the lines reported last year.53/

23. At the end of the Bank's financial year, 31 March 1956, the total paid up capital was $1,169,020, as against $1,029,020 on 31 May 1955. The difference is a further contribution of $140,000 made by the Agency, which brings the total of the Agency's contribution to date to $980,000.

24. During the period between the beginning of operations and the end of March 1956, 201 loans were made by the Bank, amounting to just over $1,184,500. Due to the repayment of loan instalments and amalgamation and liquidation of some of the projects, the number of loans in operation at the close of the Bank's financial year was 170.

25. Most of the Bank's loans go to agriculture. Of the 170 loans mentioned above, 154, amounting to $657,278, were for a variety of land development projects, such as the drilling of artesian wells, terracing, digging of irrigation canals and the purchase of livestock. Among them was a loan for a new type of undertaking: that of the establishment of a forestry project in the Jordan Valley for growing eucalyptus trees for timber production.

26. Industrial development in Jordan is still at a preliminary stage; the total number employed in manufacturing and mining industries being, according to a recent survey, not more than 2.5 per cent of the total working population of the country. Thus, only sixteen out of the 170 loans went to industry. The Bank, however, endeavours to promote suitable projects which will help the economic development of the country and result in the employment of refugees. For example, a mixed agricultural-industrial project, which has recently been approved by the Bank, is for the operation of a mobile workshop for the repair of agricultural machinery on farm lands.

27. The total number of refugees employed on projects financed by the Bank has increased in the course of the period under review from 1,500 to about 1,800. A number of them are housed on the project lands, often with their families.

28. The profit of the Bank as shown in the statement at the end of its financial year, 31 March 1956, was $28,459, almost the same profit as that of the Bank's preceding financial year ($28,579). However, collections on capital instalments and interest due from 1 July 1955 to 31 March 1956 represent only 78.16 per cent of the total amount due. It is expected that owing to last winter's good rainfall, the Bank's current financial year (1956-1957) will show a marked improvement in this respect. This is borne out by the fact that between 31 March 1956 and the end of the period under review, 30 June 1956, this percentage has increased to approximately 78 per cent.
(h) Miscellaneous projects

29. The Ghor Nimrin Tent Factory has continued its production of tents and other canvas products for the Agency's own use as well as for outside markets. The original purpose of the factory was to produce tents for sheltering the refugees and at the same time to provide employment for them. The Agency has now embarked on a programme of construction of concrete block huts, and since it is not the Agency's policy to engage in a commercial enterprise, it has now been decided to turn over the capital assets of the factory to the Jordan Government. Negotiations to that effect are now under way. If approved, this transfer will take place after the factory has completed its present order for the production of 4,400 tents required for the Agency's 1956-1957 winter shelter programme.

30. The individual grants programme, mentioned in last year's report, has developed satisfactorily during the year under review, and shows a marked increase in the number of grants made, especially during the second half of the year. Whereas during the period September 1954 to December 1955 inclusive, fifty-seven grants had been processed and approved at a total cost of approximately $191,448, during the period January 1956 to June 1956, inclusive, another 153 grants were approved at an additional cost of $517,046. Thus, since the inception of the individual grants programme in August 1954 to the end of the period under review, a total of approximately $708,494 has been approved for seventy-one agricultural, fifty-six industrial, twenty commercial, and sixty-three individual housing grants; this has led to 1,731 refugees becoming self-supporting.

31. The period during which the Agency will pay for the Administrative and Technical Staff Unit in the Jordan Ministry of Development has been extended; negotiations for its continuation until 31 December 1957 are under way. This unit, which was established
in September 1952 and has been financed by the Agency in order to help the Government to plan and carry out self-support programmes, has also assisted in the development of the individual grants project. As at the end of June 1956, the total cost to the Agency of financing this Unit was $292,282.

32. The Agency has also continued its financial assistance to the Economic Planning Unit which was established within the Jordan Ministry of Economy and Development for the purpose of integrating the expenditure of self-support funds in Jordan into a formal programme of economic development. The total estimated cost to the Agency as at 30 June 1956 was $52,083. The Agency proposes to continue the financial support of this Unit provided the Jordan Development Board is prepared to finance 50 per cent of the expenses. It is anticipated that for the next eighteen months the Agency's contribution will be approximately $27,565.
3. SELF-SUPPORT PROJECTS IN SYRIA
(a) General

33. During the period under review, the Agency was unable to make much progress in the self-support programme in Syria, with the exception of the two agricultural projects described below. It has engaged, however, in a few training projects of minor importance and continued its individual grants operations on a limited scale. Two projects, involving 1,128 refugees, in Latakia and Delli had to be abandoned as the Agency was unable to obtain the Syrian Government's support.
(b) Agricultural settlements

34. An additional fourteen families were settled by the Agency in Ramadan, forty kilometres east of Damascus. The severe drought in the latter part of 1955 affected the water supply and a new irrigation plan with improved facilities had to be devised. This accounts for the number of families settled being smaller than anticipated in last year's report.54/ To date, seventy-one housing units have been built there, sixty-four being occupied by settler families, and seven by those in ancillary employment. The settlement comprises a complete community with a school, mosque and irrigation system. Negotiations are under way with the Syrian Government for handing over to them responsibility for this settlement. The Agency's expenditure for this project, which is nearly completed, amounts to date to $453,188.

35. The agricultural settlement at Deba'a, where a total of 114 refugees were settled by the Agency, has now been handed over to the Syrian Government. The total cost to the Agency of this project amounted to $121,436.
(c) Individual grants

36. Although a comprehensive proposal has been accepted in principle by the Syrian Government, individual grants have continued to be issued on a limited basis only. A total of $200,000 was originally allocated to this project to be spent during one year; and from
its inception to date, a period of four years, $184,156 has been spent. The year under review, however, shows an increase over the previous year: $43,435 having been spent, resulting in 269 refugees becoming self-supporting, as compared with $12,135 in 1954-1955.

4. SELF-SUPPORT PROJECTS IN EGYPT AND THE GAZA DISTRICT
(a) Sinai project

37. A brief description of this project, the relevant agreements entered into with the Egyptian Government, and the studies made with a view to ascertaining its engineering and economic feasibility, have been given in the two previous annual reports.55/ A detailed feasibility report, prepared jointly by technical staff of the Agency and the Egyptian authorities, was submitted to the Director and the Egyptian Government in July 1955. It indicated the feasibility of the agricultural development of the surveyed lands, as a self-support project for refugees, with the proviso that water should be made available at the times and in the quantities specified.

38. In August 1955, however, the Egyptian Government told the Agency that it could not, at that time, provide water for the project as contemplated in the feasibility report. The Government explained that its agreement of 1953 to make water 30, and annex C, paras. 44-47. available for the Sinai project, if subsequent studies showed it to be feasible, has been based on plans to conserve water for its own uses in three ways: by drawing off storage water from the Aswan Dam; by a restricted system of cotton cultivation; and by the re-utilization of drainage water. It had not been possible to carry out these plans in full. In addition, the development of the "Liberation Province" (an Egyptian project for extending the area of cultivation along the Nile) had gone forward more quickly than expected and had, therefore, increased Egypt's own water requirements. Because of the situation of the Egyptian balance of payments, it had been necessary to stimulate the production of cotton in order to increase exports; and, in addition, the re-utilization of drainage water had not proceeded as rapidly as expected.

39. Consequently, the Egyptian Government stated that it could not undertake to make water available for a project for refugees when it was obliged to restrict the amount of water used by its own citizens. The way out of this dilemma, the Agency was informed, lay in the increased general availability of water which would come through the development of the High Dam at Aswan.

40. The Agency then proposed, and the Egyptian Government agreed, that possible alternative sources of water should be examined. At the end of the period under review, this investigation was proceeding and it was expected that it would be completed in September, 1956. As a result of this study, one suggestion--the use of return flows from the Damietta Branch of the Nile--is already being considered. More particularly, the Agency indicated that surplus drain water from the Nile Delta, east of the Damietta Branch, might be utilized. A survey was therefore undertaken of this area which should be completed in September 1956. If the quality and quantity of this water is found to be adequate and if diverting and conveying the water to the Sinai project area can be accomplished at reasonable cost, then the Agency intends to propose to the Egyptian authorities an appropriate agreement to this end.

41. While the study of the use of return flows was proceeding, the Agency had occasion from time to time to solicit the views of the Egyptian Government on the Sinai project in general, and in particular as to whether it was prepared to continue its support of the project. The response of the Egyptian authorities concerned has been that, quite apart from any possibilities that might be suggested by the technical study (mentioned in para. 40) the Egyptian Government would be prepared to begin the Sinai project when it could begin the construction of the High Dam at Aswan.
(b) Projects in Gaza

42. Following a land and water survey carried out in 1954 and 1955, it was decided to protect and to render cultivable hitherto barren areas of sandy land by afforestation, mentioned in last year's report. To date, a total of one and a half million trees have been planted. After further study and research it became evident, in spite of the doubts expressed in last year's report, that additional sand dune fixation and additional protection and enlargement of the cultivable area was feasible. In the spring of 1956, the cultivation and planting of an additional three million trees over a period of three years was begun. The planting in nurseries of the first instalment of this extended afforestation project is now under way.

43. Another project which is being planned concerns an experiment in the cultivation of sandy land. An area of 300 dunums has been selected on which to test, through scientific methods, the productivity of such land and the methods of cultivation which would be the most successful. This programme, which will be directed by the Agency's Agricultural Training centre nearby, is also designed to provide valuable training and experience for the participating refugees. The results of this experiment should greatly assist the Agency in assessing the potential value of similar sandy areas for other projects.

44. The Agency has provided some assistance to refugee workers in the local textile and rug industries, as well as in the local soap industries, by helping to market their products. The possibility of settling refugees on privately owned farm lands is being examined, but so far no decision has been reached. Also, during the past year, the Agency has made a detailed study of the Gaza fishing industry, which has shown how limited under present circumstances are the possibilities of making refugees self-supporting in it. Consideration is also being given to making individual grants to refugees to enable them to become self-supporting.

45. In Gaza, because of prevalent conditions, and the consequent impracticability of large-scale self-support projects, the Agency has concentrated on endeavouring to improve the morale and the standard of living of the refugees. After detailed investigation and after consultation with the Egyptian Government, various proposals have been made. These include the building of roads and a drainage system for Gaza town; the improvement of refugee dwellings; the construction of a small port (referred to in the previous annual report); and a simple handicrafts and rudimentary farming project for the mass employment
of young people. Except for the last-mentioned project, the Agency's Advisory Commission has expressed the view that rehabilitation funds could not be used for such purposes, as they cannot be considered as self-support projects but amount to "works projects" designed to provide employment for refugees.

5. PLACEMENT SERVICE

46. Through its field offices in Jordan, Lebanon and Gaza, the UNRWA Placement Service secured employment during the year under review for 32,748 persons as follows:

Agency employed personnel
Monthly paid.................................... 2,132
Daily paid...................................... 8,569
Employment in host countries (other than with UNRWA)
Monthly paid.................................... 82
Daily paid...................................... 21,613
Employment elsewhere in the Middle East.................. 352

Refugee candidates for employment in Arab countries other than their countries of residence are now required to pass a test in their respective trades arranged at UNRWA vocational training centres, or by reliable private firms. Although, as mentioned in paragraph 1 above, a shortage of jobs prevails throughout the Middle East except in Iraq, there is a demand for skilled refugee workers.

47. A project has been established by which trade-tested refugees (especially for the building trades) wishing to find employment may be sent to Iraq at the Agency's expense for interviews with potential employers. This project, which has been in operation for only nine months, has been found useful to employers and refugees alike.

48. The Placement Service continues its close contact with the oil and construction companies in the Persian Gulf areas. Relations are also maintained with government departments in host countries and with other potential employers in the area. The Agency continues to receive regular notification of vacancies from employers outside the host countries.

49. A total of 1,040 refugees who secured emigration visas to various countries through their own efforts applied to the Agency for travel grants. Where eligible for assistance, and where they could not have made the journey overseas otherwise, the Agency paid the fares for them and their families, and gave them a small grant towards expenses on arrival at their destination. These refugees emigrated as follows:

a/ Under the provisions of the United States Refugee Relief Act,
1953 (approximately 30 per cent of the total Palestine refugee immigrants
under the Act).


In addition, twenty individuals were repatriated to Cuba, Egypt, France, the United States and Tunisia.

6. SUMMARY

50. Statistical tables summarizing the Agency's expenditure and commitments from the $200 million fund approved by the General Assembly for the self-support programme, are appended herewith. These tables show:

(a) A summary of total expenditures from the $200 million fund from January 1951 to
30 June 1956, broken down in accordance with recognized headings;

(b) The status of self-support projects in operation during the period 1 July 1955 to 30 June 1956, and their relation to reductions in relief rolls;

(c) The ration reductions resulting from self-support operations during the period
1 January 1951 to 30 June 1956.
Table 1

SUMMARY OF TOTAL EXPENDITURES FROM THE $200 MILLION FUND
1 January 1951 to 30 June 1956
Description
1 January
1951 to 30
June 1954
$
1 July 1954
to 30 June 1955
$
1 July 1955 to 30 June 1956
$
Total to
30 June
1956
$
Elementary and secondary education........
Rehabilitation administration.............
Share of common services..................
Special activities........................
Special camp facilities...................
Research, experimentation and planning....
Vocational training and higher education..
Agricultural and lands development........
Urban housing and community facilities....
Commercial, financial and industrial......
Placement service.........................
Loans, grants, assistance to individuals..
Miscellaneous unclassified................
2,490,654
1,427,411
3,574,539
125,863
--
1,271,375
834,427
569,935
72,824
1,029,400
81,537
298,577
25,539

11,802,081
3,014,899
460,293
790,456
440,936
--
1,264,850
529,233
210,829
24,421
72,117
46,604
76,437
--

6,941,075
4,137,545
497,238
905,045
296,294
100,073
434,316
835,404
449,605
73,262
226,938
354,974
468,208
--

8,778,902
9,643,098
2,384,942
5,270,040
863,093
100,073
2,970,541
2,199,064
1,230,369
180,507
1,328,455
483,115
843,222
25,539

27,522,058
It is to be noted that expenditures under the various categories do not, in some cases, agree with those reported in the financial statements when cumulated for the same periods. This results from
(a) Adjustments made in the financial statements through the working capital fund but reclassified in the above table to appropriate categories; and
(b) Reclassification of certain projects and special activities.
Annual totals remain, however, unchanged.
Two projects, reported in the last annual report under the heading "Miscellaneous unclassified", have in the above table been put under the heading "Urban housing and community facilities".



Table 2

STATUS OF ALL PROJECTS AND SPECIAL ACTIVITIES IN OPERATION DURING THE PERIOD
1 JULY 1955 TO 30 JUNE 1956

Expenditures and ration reductions are cumulative from date of inception

Estimated number of rations to be removed
Total expen-
diture
Rations removed to 30 June 1956
Country
Number of pro-
jects
Estimated direct
cost
$
Per-
manent
Tempo-
rary ration months
to 30 June
1956
$
Per-
manent
Tempo-
rary ration months
Description
and
remarks
Jordan











Syria



Lebanon


Egypt


Gaza



Iraq


Headquarters



SUB TOTAL

Special activities


TOTAL
32











4



8


2


7



2


14

___

69


6
___

75
7,318,455











676,380



136,205


570,781


851,197



45,053


575,687

__________
10,173,758


850,740
__________

11,024,498
10,174











2,586



60


--


--



--


328

______

13,148


4
______

13,152
42,476











1,309



547


--


--



--


3,570



47,902


--


47,902
4,644,045











608,942



19,880


570,781


454,996



39,558


312,703



6,587,974


565,656


7,153,630
3,022











2,277



48


--


58



5


146



5,556


107


5,663
25,292











3,542



735


--


14



1,639


3,369



34,591


671


35,262
Of the 32 projects in Jordan, 7 are for research, 11 are Vocational training pro- jects, 7 for agricul- tural development, 2 for industrial and commer- cial enterprises, 2 for assistance to indivi- duals and 3 for urban housing

1 training, 2 agricul- tural development and 1 grants project

7 training and 1 grants project

2 projects on the Sinai survey

6 Vocational training and 1 agricultural development project

2 loans to commercial enterprises

9 special training courses, 3 research and 2 grants projects



5 special activities are operated by headquarters and 1 by Gaza

Table 3
RATION REDUCTIONS RESULTING FROM PROJECTS, SPECIAL ACTIVITIES,
EDUCATION AND PLACEMENT ACTIVITIES

For the period 1 January 1951 to 30 June 1956


Ration reductions
Category
Expenditures
1 January 1951-
30 June 1956
Permanent
Temporary
ration months
Research, experimentation and
planning
Vocational training
Agricultural development
Urban housing
Commercial, financial and
industrial
Assistance to individuals
Miscellaneous

TOTAL PROJECTS

Special activities
Elementary and secondary
education
Placement

GRAND TOTAL
2,970,541
2,199,064
1,230,369
180,507

1,328,455
843,222
25,539

8,777,697

863,093

9,643,098
483,115

19,767,003
85
3,259
1,699
253

358
3,520
--

9,174

269

4,891
1,860

16,194
15,542
34,867
11,348
223

12,088
1,865
--

75,933

1,132

5,988
12,248

95,301
ANNEX E


EDUCATION AND TRAINING

1. GENERAL

1. During the year under review, the number of children who benefited from the Agency's elementary and secondary education programme was 169,555 (1954-1955: 160,778). Of these 111,890 (1954-1955: 104,751) attended elementary or secondary classes in one or other of the 350 schools (1954-1955: 304) maintained by the Agency. A total of 57,665 pupils (1954-1955: 55,967) were enrolled in government and private schools, under the Agency's grants-in-aid system. Some 408 (1954-1955: 303) students were enrolled at the Agency's two vocational training centres; 350 (1954-1955: 300) attended universities at the Agency's
expense, and approximately 4,272 adults were enrolled in the Agency's fundamental education centres. The number of teachers employed by the Agency was 3,093 (1954-1955: 2,669).

2. The aims of the UNRWA/UNESCO educational programme are: to make available an elementary education to every refugee boy and girl; to provide secondary education to an increasing percentage of refugee children to correspond with the rising proportion of non-refugee children receiving secondary education in the host countries; to give university scholarships to a limited number of outstanding refugee students for specified courses; to place increasing emphasis on vocational training, including agricultural training; to provide the means whereby as many as possible refugee adults of both sexes may
become literate.

3. In order to meet these objectives, it is necessary to have enough good teachers. As was anticipated in last year's report,56/ the new and improved salary scale, which came into force on 1 July 1955, has had a markedly beneficial effect. It is now possible for the
Agency to compete for new teachers on something approaching even terms with the education departments of the host countries. Formerly, the Agency could engage few teachers who possessed minimum academic qualifications. During this past year, it has been possible to confine all recruitment of new teachers to those who had at least completed their secondary education. The Agency has also continued and amplified its teacher training programme (described below).

4. Both UNRWA and UNESCO have been at pains to encourage education for girls in the Agency's school system. This year slightly more than one-third of the pupils registered in the Agency's schools were girls. There are now 101 girls' schools maintained by the Agency, compared with eighty-seven in 1954-1955, and 117 co-educational schools as against 100
a year ago. Of particular significance is the fact that the new intake for the school year 1955-1956 was 10,211 girls, as against 10,909 boys. Enrolment figures for girl pupils by year and by area since 1951 were as follows:

Area
June
1951
June
1952
June
1953
June
1954
June
1955
June
1956
Gaza...............Jordan.............Lebanon............Syria..............5,357
4,349
1,029
941

11,676
5,410
4,526
2,076
727

12,739
6,189
10,035
3,160
2,074

21,467
8,652
14,249
4,154
3,585

30,640
10,507
15,589
4,337
3,693

34,126
12,789
16,790
4,558
3,863

37,940


5. The handicraft activity programme, mentioned in last year's report,[sp,sm:57] has developed along the lines anticipated and the first phase of this successful experiment which began in Gaza in the summer of 1954 has been concluded. By the end of the school year
1955-1956, thirty-one handicraft workshops had been built and equipped in Gaza, and about 10,000 boys between the ages of ten and fourteen were receiving instruction in woodwork, metalwork and technical drawing as part of a normal modern school syllabus. In January 1956, the UNESCO specialist who had set up the programme in Gaza moved on to introduce
the programme to Jordan. Before the end of the period under review, construction work had started on the first of twenty workshops which will serve the Agency's schools in Jordan during 1956-1957. At the same time, sixty-four Agency teachers embarked on a three months' conversion training course at the Vocational Training Centre, Kalandia. They will staff the new Jordan workshops in the autumn.

2. ELEMENTARY EDUCATION

6. For the second year in succession there was a decrease in the number of pupils entering the lowest class of the elementary cycle. The new intake amounted in 1955-1956 to 21,120, which should be compared with new intakes of 27,718 last year and 31,000 in 1953-1954. Though a normal decline in the intake was anticipated, because of the stricter enforcement of the rule that children under six should not be admitted to the Agency's schools, it was not expected that the decline would be so great. The chief reason for it is probably to be found in the fact that the six-year old children, now attending Agency schools for the first time, were born in 1949, that is to say in the year following the exodus from Palestine, when there was a sharp drop in the number of births.

7. The total registration in UNRWA/UNESCO elementary schools, as of May 1956, was 102,007 (65,031 boys and 36,976 girls). This compares with 98,427 and 90,748 for the same month in 1955 and 1954 respectively. Expressed in terms of percentages, the increase this year was only 3.6 per cent of last year's total, whereas last year the percentage increase
over the preceding year was 10.5 per cent and the year before that 35.7 per cent. This consistent trend is a direct consequence of the rule that no pupils younger than six be admitted to the first elementary class.

8. The payment of grants-in-aid and fees for books on behalf of refugee pupils attending government and private elementary schools showed a decrease this year for the first time. There were only 48,875 subsidized elementary school pupils in 1955-1956 as compared with 55,964 in 1954-1955 and 52,069 in 1953-1954. This is explained by the fact that large numbers of refugee elementary pupils, particularly in the Gaza area, enrolled this year in Agency schools, though they had previously been attending government or private schools.

9. The total number of refugee pupils receiving elementary education at the Agency's expense this year was 150,882. This shows a decline from last year's total of 154,391. The reasons for this decline have been discussed in paragraph 7 above.

3. SECONDARY EDUCATION

10. The increasing numbers of pupils seeking secondary education continues to constitute a major and very pressing problem. Pupils attending the two secondary classes available in UNRWA/UNESCO schools (first and second secondary) entail a per capita expenditure for text-books and supplies which is more than three times the amount required for an elementary pupil, while their much smaller classes generally result in doubling the pupil-teacher ratio for the classes involved. When the education of secondary school pupils is subsidized by the Agency, the proportionate expense increases still further. Then a
secondary school pupil costs nearly six times as much as an elementary school pupil (ten times as much in Lebanon where a special rate is in force). A request for increased subsidies made by the Egyptian authorities would, if accepted, raise the cost ratio of secondary school pupils in Gaza attending government schools to nearly eleven times the cost of an elementary school pupil.

11. The following table shows the number of secondary school pupils according to school and area. Figures in parentheses are for 1954-1955.

12. These figures show a 62 per cent increase in the number of secondary school pupils. The actual over-all budgeted ratio of secondary to elementary pupils was 12 1/2 per cent, in accordance with the provisions of the Agency's five-year plan for refugee education. But because of the disproportionate needs of Gaza, where education is the principal occupation available for children and adolescents, this percentage was not divided equally between the four areas; Gaza received a quota of 17.8 per cent, Jordan 9.3 per cent, Lebanon 11.8 per cent and Syria 14.5 per cent. This over-all percentage figure will be increased to 15 per cent during 1956-1957.

13. The criticism is often made that the Agency is providing too much secondary education and that, if the percentage of refugee pupils receiving secondary education were related to the total population figure, it would be found that these percentages were far in excess of those prevailing in the host countries. This is not true. According to


Area
Agency
schools
Government
schools
Private
schools
Totals
Gaza.............
Jordan...........Lebanon..........Syria............
4,937 (3,339)
3,062 (1,694)
948 ( 620)
936 ( 671)

9,883 (6,324)
1,646 (1,129)
2,484 (1,364)
62 ( 400)
1,310 (1,031)

5,502 (3,524)
( 270)
1,323 ( 586)
1,473 ( 400)
492 ( 453)

3,288 (1,709)
6,583 ( 4,738)
6,869 ( 3,644)
2,483 ( 1,020)
2,738 ( 2,135)

18,673 (11,537)

reliable statistics, the ratios of secondary school pupils to the total population in each of the four host countries for the school year 1954-1955 were as follows:

Per cent
Egypt..................................................... 2.1
Jordan.................................................... 1.9
Lebanon................................................... 1.5
Syria..................................................... 1.6

Corresponding ratios for the refugee population for the same period were:

Per cent
Gaza...................................................... 2.2
Jordan.................................................... 1.4
Lebanon................................................... 1.5
Syria..................................................... 1.8

Comparable figures for the school year 1955-1956 are not yet available.

4. UNIVERSITY EDUCATION

14. Special care was taken during 1955-1956 to tighten selection procedure and to ensure that all scholarship-holders were of proper scholarship calibre, and to ensure that the distinction between a scholarship and a study grant was fully appreciated. A grati-
fyingly large number of UNRWA scholarship-holders graduated with honours in June 1956 from various universities in the Middle East.

15. The 350 scholarships granted during the academic year 1955-1956 (mentioned in para. 1) were divided between the four areas on a population quota basis as follows: Gaza 90; Jordan 160; Lebanon 50; Syria 50. Selection committees refrained from making a point of filling these quotas. Instead, they concentrated on appointing only those students who showed real academic promise. The number of full scholarships awarded in each area during 1955-1956 (figures in parentheses for 1954-1955) were as follows:

Gaza
87 (83)
Jordan
199 (117)
Lebanon
50 (50)
Syria
43 (50)

Money saved on full scholarships that were not awarded was used to endow twenty-one partial scholarships in Lebanon, where pressure to enter the universities is greatest and where well-qualified candidates are to be found in large numbers among the refugee population.

16. As an experiment, twenty-five of the 350 scholarships were set aside for teachers in the employ of the Agency. This will enable them to improve their qualifications and advance towards the higher grades of their profession. Scholarship-holders with exceptionally high qualifications were also encouraged to attend the university of their choice in Egypt, Lebanon or Syria. Negotiations are being carried on (and were concluded shortly after the end of the period under review) to add Iraq to the list of countries where scholarship-holders may study, the object being to obtain access for refugee students to a larger number and broader range of academic institutions in the Middle East; fourteen places were allotted, and no fees will be charged.

17. The following tables show the distribution of scholarship-holders by faculty or course of study during 1955-1956, and the courses from which scholarship-holders graduated during the past academic year. In both cases the corresponding figures for 1954-1955 have been added in parentheses.

Agriculture........................................... 18 (12)
Arts.................................................. 72 (68)
Commerce.............................................. 14 (14)
Dentistry............................................. 2 ( 1)
Education............................................. 8 ( 4)
Engineering........................................... 68 (35)
Law................................................... 7 (12)
Medicine.............................................. 69 (63)
Pharmacy.............................................. 2 ( 4)
Sciences.............................................. 48 (47)
Veterinary............................................ 3 ( 4)
Tawjihi............................................... 39 (36)
(Post-matriculation year for Jordan students)

GRAND TOTAL: 350



Refugees from
Course
Gaza
Jordan
Lebanon
Syria
Total
Agriculture...........
Arts..................
Commerce..............
Economics.............
Education.............
Engineering...........
Law...................
Medicine..............
Sciences..............
1 (1)
4 (8)
2 (2)
1 -
- -
2 (1)
2 (1)
- (2)
3 -

15 (15)
-
4
1
-
-
1
3 (1)
2 (3)
1

12 (4)
1
1 (2)
-
1
1
1
-
2 (3)
3 (1)

9 (6)
-
2 (1)
-
-
-
1
1 (1)
1 (1)
1

6 (3)
2
11
3
1
1
5
6
5
8

42 (30)

5. VOCATIONAL TRAINING

18. Increased emphasis continues to be placed on the Agency's vocational training programme in order to meet the growing need for skilled artisans in the host countries as well as in the neighbouring Arab States, and to meet also the increased demand for this
type of training by the young refugees. More and more it is being realized that learning a trade provides an opportunity for earning a good living at work which can be very satisfying. Now, in Jordan, the number of applications for admission is usually two or three times greater than the number of places. Whereas previously a large proportion of the applicants were youths who had applied for vocational training as a second choice to regular academic courses, that is to say youths who had been unable to secure places in regular academic courses, or who thought they might not succeed in this form of education, the majority of applicants now consist of young men with a genuine interest in the mechanical, electrical or building trades, and who foresee a future for themselves as skilled tradesmen. This growth of interest in learning a trade has undoubtedly been influenced by the fact that, of the 176 trainees who have graduated from the Kalandia Vocational Training Centre since it was established in March 1953, the great majority have
obtained suitable employment at satisfactory wages.

19. The Kalandia Vocational Training Centre has been expanded during the past year and many alterations made to the existing buildings. Much of the latter work was performed by the trainees as part of their course. When courses in welding and automotive engineering have been introduced, the Centre will have a full complement of 188 trainees.

20. The Gaza Vocational Training Centre commenced a two-shift programme of training early in 1956. Preparations are now under way to increase the existing workshop accommodation to take 300 trainees on a single shift. Plans for a hutted dormitory to accommodate the 300 trainees have been prepared, and it is hoped that construction of the unit will be completed by the end of 1956, thus making the centre fully residential, similar to the Kalandia Centre. Pending the completion of the dormitory building, lodging allowances are being paid to a limited number of trainees in order that they may live in the vicinity of the centre and so be able to attend the afternoon courses in spite of the curfew hours. Some of the staff have been under great strain since the introduction of the double-shift; they have had to work throughout both shifts because it was impossible to find new instructors. Suitably qualified men have, however, now been obtained and will take up duty shortly. A new principal has also been appointed after prolonged searching and negotiations with the authorities concerned. The auto mechanics' school will be transferred to the Vocational Training Centre as soon as the new workshop is completed. Construction of this building has been held up due to the lack of building material and suitable labour.

21. In the centres at Kalandia and Gaza where the numbers have increased due to the expansion mentioned above, training was offered in fourteen different trades. The following table shows the present distribution of trainees during 1955-1956 by trades (1954-1955 totals are shown in parentheses):

KalandiaGaza
1. Electricians....................................
2. Radio mechanics.................................
3. Wiremen.........................................
4. Fitter machinists...............................
5. Blacksmith welders..............................
6. Blacksmith sheet metal workers..................
7. Plumbers........................................
8. Moulders........................................
9. Typewriter mechanics............................
10. Instrument mechanics............................
11. Auto mechanics..................................
12. Carpenters......................................
13. Builders........................................
14. Draughtsmen.....................................
15
15
16
16
16
-
16
-
-
-
-
16
16
10
136 (116)
45
16
-
38
12
29
16
12
16
16
42
30
-
-
272 (187)


22. There is larger projected expansion in view, which is expected not only to double the facilities existing in Jordan but to lead to the construction of two vocational training centres in Lebanon.

23. The Agency's Agricultural Training Centre at Beit Hanoun in the Gaza strip, mentioned in last year's report,58/ was completed during the year under review, after a long delay due to the frequent incidents along the demarcation line. Although not officially opened at the end of the period under review, the farm lands have been under crops and the centre has been functioning with a complement of forty-three trainees for several months. Pedigree stock have been donated to the centre from the United States. Standard plans for other agricultural training centres are being drawn up, based on the experience of the Gaza centre.

24. In addition to the training being carried out at the Agency's own centres, full-time and part-time courses have been conducted at government and private institutions in the host countries. These have consisted of surveying, engineering, statistics, agriculture, etc., as well as commercial and secretarial subjects.

25. A six-month in-service course was carried out for the Agency's secretarial staff at headquarters and Lebanon field offices by a UNESCO expert seconded to the Agency. A two-month part-time course in public administration was also conducted at the American University of Beirut for a selected number of the Agency's area staff.

26. In view of the difficulties experienced in recruiting suitable trade instructors for the two existing centres and for the new centres that are planned, it was decided to build an instructor training unit for seventy selected artisans, who will be given a course
extending over about twelve months by an instructor-training specialist assisted by the present vocational-training specialists. It is hoped also to have part-time assistance from the UNESCO teacher-training team at Jerusalem. The building will be constructed by the trainees at Kalandia. The design is such that the unit can easily be converted later into living apartments for the staff of the centre.

27. Surveys have been, and continue to be, carried out in the Middle East area in order to determine which trades are in greatest demand and meetings have been held with numerous propspective employers to ascertain the possible need of specialized training to suit local requirements. As a result of these surveys it has become evident that there is at present a greater need of skilled workers in the building than in the electrical and engineering trades. Consequently, the training of students in this trade group will be emphasized at the proposed centres. Furthermore, as there are obviously good employment opportunities for trained people in the clerical field, i.e., clerk/typists, storekeepers, etc., and in the professional field such as surveyors, draughtsmen etc., it is planned to include this type of training in the new centres as well.

6. FUNDAMENTAL EDUCATION

28. During the period 1955-1956, the fundamental education centres continued their normal programme, except in those cases where the introduction of community centres as mentioned in last year's report,59/ resulted in planned mergers. As an essential part of the mechanism for setting up the newly-planned community centres, the total budgets for the fundamental education and the welfare centres were frozen at the previous year's level.

29. The work of the various centres is determined by the requirements of the specific environment and all the activities fall into two fairly well defined categories: literacy and further education; craft training and recreation.


Women's centresMen's centres
Gaza........................
Jordan......................
Lebanon.....................
Syria.......................
9
15
7
5
36
15
15
6
6
42


In some few camps there exists an independent women's centre and in others, men's centres only. As a general rule both the men's and women's centres should be considered as existing together.
Number of staff employed
SupervisorsInstructorsPart-time teachers
Gaza................
Jordan..............
Lebanon.............
Syria...............
18
27
9
11
18
14
9
9
72
90
22
21


It will be seen from the foregoing that sixty-five fundamental education centre supervisors and fifty craft instructors are employed. In addition, 205 part-time teachers are used to teach literacy and further education. In computing attendance at the centres, the figures for craft and recreation were rejected as the attendance in these groups fluctuate with the season of the year and the activities provided. Attendance figures have been therefore based on the literacy classes as more likely to give a consistent result; the attendance for the year was 4,272, or as a rough average, sixty-three students of literacy in each centre.

7. TEACHER TRAINING

30. One of the major joint efforts of UNRWA and UNESCO during the academic year 1955-1956, was the launching in January of the twin pilot teacher training centres in Jordan--one for men and one for women, as mentioned in last year's report.60/ This is
the first step in a programme which is calculated to raise the level of teaching in the Agency's schools.

31. The one for men occupies two newly-built rented houses at Shu'fat near Jerusalem, the one for women a house with a garden in Nablus. Each centre houses twenty trainees and is staffed by a principal and seven instructors. The principals and a proportion of the instructors are Palestinians; the balance were recruited in Egypt, Lebanon and Syria. The technical supervision of training and the elaboration of teaching methods and a modernized curriculum are the responsibility of a UNESCO team of six specialists. This international team and the project as a whole was under the general supervision of a teacher training adviser recruited by UNESCO in the United States and seconded to the Agency. The six specialists were drawn from Denmark, Egypt, France, Norway and the United Kingdom, working in the fields of Arabic, English, the natural and social sciences, mathematics, educational psychology, physical education and visual aids.

32. Plans for the evolution of these centres call for the men's centre to increase its intake to eighty in 1956-1957 and to set up as a teacher training college with 200 trainees in residence the following year. The women's centre will follow roughly the same pattern of development one year later. Both centres give a two-year course. Men trainees must have completed secondary education and some have already had a year's experience teaching in Agency schools.

33. To improve the quality of school inspection, a short course for thirteen area education officers and assistant area education officers was conducted in Jerusalem in April 1956. Candidates were drawn from the ranks of men and women head-teachers. Considerable professional assistance was given by the UNESCO teacher-training team.

34. Hitherto, the annual summer refresher courses have been of a general nature and designed merely to give some rudimentary training to inexperienced teachers employed by the Agency. This year for the first time short specialized courses in Arabic, English, mathematics and physical education were organized at Ramallah in Jordan. Here again, the UNESCO team proved of great assistance. The regular refresher courses were also held later in the summer in all areas except Lebanon.

8. PHYSICAL FACILITIES

35. The Agency's building programme, mentioned in last year's report,61/ was affected by delays in Gaza and Jordan. In Jordan, the plan to replace the unsatisfactory rented school premises by building new schools in a number of towns could not be carried out as anticipated, but it is hoped that it will go forward in 1956-1957. In Gaza, the Agency had planned to eliminate, over a period of two years, the double-shift system that now prevails. However, this system has now become so general in the area that, in order to eliminate it, it would be necessary to build, equip and maintain 525 classrooms and administrative rooms at a cost of over half a million dollars. This is for the moment beyond the financial capacity of the Agency, and the plan has had to be shelved temporarily; for the first time in Gaza it has been necessary to rent school classrooms.

36. The building of new schools and the renting of school premises and classrooms during 1955-1956 as compared with 1954-1955 (in parentheses) is shown in the following tables:


Area
New Schools
Number of
classrooms
Number of classrooms
added to existing schools
Gaza..................
Jordan................
Lebanon...............
Syria.................
10 (7)
7 (13)
Nil (2)
Nil (Nil)
17 (22)
133 (111)
55 (90)
Nil (20)
Nil (Nil)
188 (221)
2 (69)
34 (28)
Nil (6)
11 (Nil)
47 (103)
Area
Schools rented
Number of
classrooms rented
Gaza........................................
Jordan......................................
Lebanon.....................................
Syria.......................................
Nil (Nil)
122 (105)
33 (32)
42 (39)
197 (176)
341 (Nil)
720 (564)
32 (154)
158 (150)
1,251 (868)


37. A new standard desk, designed to withstand hard wear and tear, is being manufactured along improved lines at $8.00 per two-pupil unit in Gaza, and $9.50 in other areas.

38. The over-all supply of school furniture during 1955-1956 is compared with that during 1954-1955 (figures in parentheses) in the following table:

Area
Desks
Tables
Blackboards
Gaza.................
Jordan...............
Lebanon..............
Syria................
1,325 (3,000)
6,164 (3,115)
500 (2,900)
575 (800)
8,564 (9,815)
176 (200)
484 (486)
159 (129)
124 (76)
843 (891)
63 (33)
200 (200)
122 (95)
106 (50)
491 (378)

39. The procurement of equipment and supplies for the needs of education and training in Agency establishments is becoming increasingly complex and difficult. The introduction of the handicraft programme added hundreds of items to the order lists, and articles listed in respect of the vocational training programme alone amount to over 2,500 separate items. The supply of text-books continues to be a problem all its own, because the Ministries of Education of the host countries annually replace the text-books in use by new text-books. The Agency was fortunate in coming to an agreement with the Egyptian authorities regarding the provision of text-books for Gaza, according to which they would be printed simultaneously with those required for government schools and would be supplied to the Agency at cost plus 10 per cent.

9. UNESCO STAFF AND SERVICES

40. UNESCO has continued to recruit and pay the salaries of the greater part of the body of international specialists who direct the education and training activities of UNRWA. The number of these specialists was increased by the secondment of a teacher- training adviser and the team of six mentioned in paragraph 31 above. UNESCO has also seconded a fundamental education adviser to fill a vacancy created in August 1955.

41. UNESCO has also been active in supplying books and materials in connexion with the pilot teacher-training projects in which it takes a particular interest. Technical help in this special field is likely to increase during the coming year.

42. In November 1955, UNESCO convened, as it does once every two years, a working party with accredited representatives from the Ministries of Education of the host countries and from the Department of Cultural Affairs of the Arab League, to consult with representatives of the Agency on matters affecting education and training among the refugees. The meetings were held in Beirut.

UNRWA/UNESCO SCHOOLS SHOWING NUMBER OF PUPILS PER CLASS AT THE END OF MAY 1956

Elementary classes

I
II
III
IV
V
VI
Total
Country
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Gaza
Jordan
Lebanon
Syria
2,700
4,698
2,410
1,101
10,909
2,977
4,717
1,729
788
10,211
4,082
5,688
1,749
1,339
12,858
2,841
4,720
1,178
888
9,627
4,735
5,527
1,511
1,485
13,258
2,887
3,959
801
915
8,562
4,809
5,388
1,155
1,243
12,595
1,748
2,116
439
627
4,930
3,523
3,316
886
1,054
8,779
1,053
736
215
299
2,303
3,076
2,378
780
398
6,632
656
406
130
151
1,343
22,925
26,995
8,491
6,620
65,031
12,162
16,654
4,492
3,668
36,976
GRAND TOTAL
21,120
22,475
21,820
17,525
11,082
7,975
102,007
Secondary classes
I
II
III
IV
V
Total
Country
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Boys
Girls
Gaza
Jordan
Lebanon
Syria
2,667
1,477
500
283
4,927
405
91
50
108
654
1,703
840
386
295
3,224
162
45
12
53
272
--
409
--
163
572
--
--
--
34
34
--
154
--
--
154
--
--
--
--
--
--
46
--
--
46
--
--
--
--
--
4,370
2,926
886
741
8,923
567
136
62
195
960
GRAND
TOTAL
5,581
3,496
606
154
--
9,883
Total elementary = 102,007
Total secondary = 9,883
GRAND TOTAL = 111,890
DISTRIBUTION OF PALESTINE REFUGEE CHILDREN RECEIVING EDUCATION AS AT MAY 1956

Country
Number
of
UNRWA/
UNESCO
schools
Elementary classes
Secondary classes
Total number of
assisted refugee pupils in elementary and secondary classes in
Total
number of
refugees
receiving
education
Estimated
number of
refugee
population
April
1956
Percentage of total
refugee population
receiving education
Boys
Girls
Total
Boys
Girls
Total
Government schools pupils
Private
schools
pupils
June
1954
May
1955
May
1956
Gaza
Jordan
Lebanon
Syria
65
178
47
60
350
22,925
26,995
8,491
6,620
65,031
12,162
16,654
4,492
3,668
36,976
35,087
43,649
12,983
10,288
102,007
4,370
2,926
886
741
8,923
567
136
62
195
960
4,937
3,062
948
936
9,883
1,835
23,789
1,251
8,397
35,272
1,664
10,443
8,342
1,944
22,393
43,523
80,943
23,516
21,565
169,547
217,077
510,655
102,148
89,830
919,710
17.7
14.15
20.4
22.8
17.6
19.05
15.5
22.65
22.18
17.73
20.04
15.8
23.02
24
18.4
ANNEX F

FINANCIAL OPERATIONS

1. FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

1. In accordance with the usual practice, financial statements for the fiscal year ended 30 June 1956, are presented separately with the report of the Board of Auditors 62/ and are not duplicated in the present report. The following comments highlight the more important aspects of the financial statements:
(a) Budget and expenditures

2. Expenditures for the relief programme totalled $23,419,648, against an approved budget of $26,776,261. The difference of $3.4 million is due to the following major factors: it did not prove necessary to utilize the operational reserves of $800,000, or the other reserves for specific purposes aggregating almost $400,000; only a small part of the $500,000 worth of cloth had actually been distributed to refugees before 30 June (but most of it had been procured and is reflected in the statement of assets and liabilities under the inventory of supplies); about $500,000 was saved on the supplies for basic subsistence and for the milk and supplementary feeding programmes, mainly due to lower prices than had been anticipated and to the fact that during part of the year the number of beneficiaries
for the milk and supplementary feeding programmes were smaller than planned for; transportation within the area and warehousing and handling costs were more than $200,000 less than expected; and nearly $1 million of construction and equipment was not completed or delivered by the end of the year. Over 70 per cent of this latter amount pertained to the shelter programme.

3. Expenditures for the rehabilitation programme totalled $8,778,902, against an approved budget of $92,556,665. The difference of nearly $83.8 million is mainly due to the facts that little further progress has been made on the Yarmuk-Jordan Valley project and
Sinai project (for which $76.6 million had been provided in the budget) and no other projects of any magnitude were undertaken (for which nearly $4.5 million was provided in the budget). This resulted in an underexpenditure of more than $79.4 million. In addition, there was an underexpenditure of nearly $3.2 million for construction and equipment (about $2.5 million for General Education and vocational training and $700,000 for special camp facilities) due generally to the continued difficulties of finding suitable sites for buildings. As a result, there was an underexpenditure of about $200,000 for the operations of vocational training centres. A further saving of nearly $500,000 under the operations of the General Education system is explained by a much smaller enrolment than anticipated due apparently to the very low birth rate among the refugees in 1948-1949.
(b) Income

4. As detailed below, income totalled $24,218,141, of which $1,134,655 was reserved for the rehabilitation programme. A substantial portion of this income was not received by the Agency until almost the close of the year. Consequently, although the books at the end
of the year show $23,083,486 as contributed for relief, actual funds in this total amount were not available for expenditure during the year.

5. During the year, $23,365,323 in new pledges were received from Governments. The Governments actually paid a total of $23,646,275, of which $22,319,040 was against 1955-1956 pledges and the balance--$1,327,235--was against pledges for previous years.

6. Income for the year and the status of pledges at the end of the year may be recapitulated as follows:


Received
during
1955-1956
As at 30 June 1956
Unpaid pledges of
1955-56
(In US dollars)
Previous
years
Contributions from
Governments..........
Contributions from
others...............
Miscellaneous income..

TOTAL
23,646,275

200,822
371,044

24,218,141
1,046,283

--
--

1,046,283
40,733,311

--
--

40,753,311



7. Unpaid pledges are listed as follows:


Total
Period of pledge
Year 1955-1956
(In US dollars)
Previous
years
Brazil...............
Canada...............
Denmark..............
France...............
Greece...............
India................
Indonesia............
Iran.................
Israel...............
Korea................
Lebanon..............
Monaco...............
Pakistan.............
Saudi Arabia.........
Switzerland..........
Syria................
Turkey...............
United Kingdom of
Great Britain and
Northern Ireland....
United States of
America.............
Uruguay..............
Yugoslavia...........
TOTAL
25,000
500,000
43,434
1,002,286
11,000
31,499
30,000
3,350
50,000
2,000
99,375
286
21,000
150,000
19,234
17,916
5,000


8,800,159

30,943,055
5,000
40,000

41,799,594
500,000
43,434
285,714
11,000
31,499
30,000
3,350



286
21,000
75,000


5,000






40,000

1,046,283
25,000

716,572




50,000
2,000
99,375


75,000
19,234
17,916



8,800,159
30,943,055
5,000

__________

40,753,311


8. The unpaid pledges from the United States, the United Kingdom and France (except that pledged for 1955-1956) have been reserved for the rehabilitation programme. The host Governments made no cash pledges for the fiscal year 1955-1956 and paid nothing against pledges made in previous years. In this connexion, the status of pledges made by the Lebanese Government and other claims against that Government are in the process of settlement which is likely to be completed in the early future. Since November 1952, the Jordan Government has made no payment to the Agency on account of the annual contribution of $168,000 provided for in the 1951 basic agreement between the two parties; little progress has been made this year on negotiations started last year for the revision of the basic agreement. Because it is most doubtful that the amounts due under the terms of the terms of the agreement with Jordan will be paid, they are not reflected in the list of unpaid pledges. On the other hand, as reflected in the table below, the host Governments provided the Agency with a number of valuable services, such as the transport of supplies, porterage, port facilities and warehouse and office facilities, and also contributed services directly to the refugees the value of which they have assessed at more than $500,000:


Government
Contribution of services
to the Agency
Contributions direct to
refugees at reported values a/
(In US dollars)
Egypt.......................
Jordan......................
Lebanon.....................
Syria.......................
TOTAL
224,924
--
12,164
74,900

311,988
no information
516,965
21,214
no information

538,179
a/ These figures have been supplied by the Governments concerned. Since they are contributed direct to the refugees, they are not subject to the Agency's financial procedures.


9. Although the Agency has requested the information, Egypt and Syria had not, at the time of writing of the present report, communicated to the Agency the value of their contribution direct to the refugees in 1955-1956. Nor has Egypt reported for the year 1954-1955.

(c) Excess of expenditure over income

10. As mentioned above, the Agency spent a total of $32,198,550 and received only $24,218,141, thereby causing an operating deficit of $7,980,409 for the year. Since only $1,134,655 of the income received was specifically designated for rehabilitation purposes, as against rehabilitation expenditures of $8,778,902, it was necessary to withdraw the difference--$7,644,247--from funds on hand (working capital) designated for the rehabilitation programme. Expenditure for relief exceeded income received and available relief purposes by $336,162, which likewise had to be met out of working capital.

(d) Assets and liabilities

11. As a consequence of the operating deficit for the year and adjustment for previous years, the net assets (working capital) decreased by approximately $8.2 million as set forth below:


30 June
Decrease
(increase)
1956
1955
(In millions of US dollars)
Total assets..........
Less liabilities and
reserves............

NET ASSETS
30.2

3.0

27.2
38.3

2.9

35.4
8.1

( .1)

8.2


12. As reflected in the analysis of working capital shown below, approximately $7 million is represented by investment in inventories and other assets which are not available to meet operating needs in 1956-1957; in addition, there were outstanding contingent liabilities of approximately $6 million. (Sums of the same magnitude will continue to be needed for these purposes during 1956-1957, in order to maintain the pipeline of supplies.) Hence, on 30 June 1956, there was in effect only $14.3 million in working capital for operational purposes of both programmes--relief and rehabilitation--as compared with $20.2 million a year previously. Of the total of $14.3 million, only 4.2 million was available for the relief programme--about enough for two months' operations. But even if the total of $14.3 were to be used, it would not, in itself, be sufficient to finance the Agency's relief and rehabilitation operations even to 31 December 1956. Hence, substantial cash contributions must be forthcoming at an early date if the Agency is to continue operations.

ANALYSIS OF WORKING CAPITAL
AS AT 30 JUNE 1956

Total
Designated for the
rehabilitation programme
Balance available
for the relief programme
(In thousands of US dollars)
Working capital.......

Deduct assets not available for operational purposes:
Inventories..........
Accounts receivable..
Cash collateral for
letter of credit in
favour of the
United Nations
Children's Fund.....

TOTAL ASSETS DEDUCTED

Working capital
available............

Deduct contingent
liabilities on
unfilled purchase
orders and contracts.

Working capital
available for
operational purposes
27,228




5,096
653




1,000

6,749


20,479




6,178



14,301
======
11,467




345
52




--

397


11,070




957



10,113
======
15,761




4,751
601




1,000

6,352


9,409




5,221



4,188
======

2. GENERAL FINANCIAL REQUIREMENTS

13. Although the past two annual reports have pointed out the precarious financial position of the Agency and although the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions has recognized the Agency's insufficient working capital, the financial position continues to deteriorate and there is no evidence that adequate funds will be made
available in the foreseeable future.

14. Not only have no funds been received to increase working capital, as specifically requested by the Agency, but contributions continue to be far less than expenditures, with resulting reductions in working capital. Working capital was reduced by $4.2 million in 1954-1955 and by $8.2 million in 1955-1956. The situation is further aggravated by the fact that the majority of contributions have continued to be paid during the latter part of the fiscal year. Nearly 60 per cent of total income was not received until the last four months of 1955-1956. This is clearly demonstrated in the following table which shows the amount of contributions and income received in each quarter of 1955-1956 and the percentage of the total:


1955-1956
Quarter
Amount received
(In US dollars)
Percentage
of total
First............
Second...........
TOTAL FIRST
HALF OF YEAR
Third ($6 million
received in
March)..........
Fourth:
April...........
May.............
June............



TOTAL FOR YEAR
2,915,634
64,920
5,032,055
2,314,701
374,098

2,688,799


13,516,733





8,012,609

24,218,141
12.0
0.3
20.8
9.6
1.5

11.1


55.8





33.1

100.0


15. The point has been reached in the finances of the Agency where it is not only essential that contributions for the period at least equal anticipated expenditures, but that approximately half of those contributions be paid on or before the start of its fiscal year. Unless there is assurance on both these points, the whole question as to the Agency's future up to 1960 must be re-examined.

3. PROPOSED BUDGET FOR THE EIGHTEEN MONTHS
1 JULY 1956-31 DECEMBER 1957

16. A detailed budget for the eighteen months of 1956-1957 (from 1 July 1956 to 31 December 1957) and the contributions required to finance it has been prepared in consultation with the UNRWA Advisory Commission, and is summarized here.

17. A period of eighteen months is used as the Agency's next fiscal period because it was decided, in consultation with the Advisory Committee for Administrative and Budgetary Questions, to change the financial year from a fiscal to a calendar basis. Therefore, an odd period of six months must be introduced for the 1956-1957 period.

18. As more fully explained in the narrative accompanying the detailed budget, the budget for the eighteen months' period has been divided into two parts, one for the first six months and the other for the last twelve months (or calendar year 1957); and, for purposes of budget comparison, it is considered preferable to compare the approved 1955-1956 budget with that for the calendar year 1957. However, it must be pointed out that, in so far as construction and equipment are concerned, a comparison between the two budget periods is not meaningful because the budget for the fiscal year 1955-1956 was underspent by $4.2 million representing items most of which are still needed and therefore repeated in the budget for the next six months.

19. The budget for the eighteen months of 1956-1957 may be summarized in comparison with the budget for the twelve months of 1955-1956 as follows:


Budget
1956-1957
1955-1956
Total eighteen
months
First six
months
Last twelve
months
Twelve
months
(In thousands of US dollars)
Relief programme:
Operations......
Construction
and equipment..

TOTAL RELIEF
PROGRAMME

Rehabilitation
programme:
Operations......
Construction
and equipment..
Minor projects..

SUB-TOTAL
Major projects..

TOTAL REHABILI-
TATION PROGRAMME

TOTAL ALL
PROGRAMMES:
Excluding major
projects.......
Major projects..
40,806

2,559


43,365



12,823

3,242
6,000

22,065
76,600


98,665




65,430
76,600

142,030
12,868

1,037


13,905



4,510

1,533
1,000

7,043
--


7,043




20,948
--

20,948
27,938

1,522


29,460



8,313

1,709
5,000

15,022
76,600


91,622




44,482
76,600

121,082
24,566

2,210


26,776



7,580

3,896
4,481

15,957
76,600


92,557




42,733
76,600

119,333
Note: Of the total amount of $6,106,000 shown for construction and equipment for 1955-1956 ($2,210,000 for relief and $3,896,000 for rehabilitation) $3,908,000 had not been spent by the end of that period and will be carried forward. Hence, the amounts shown for construction and equipment for 1956-1957 totalling $5,801,000 include the $3,908,000 carry-over.



20. The increase of almost $3,400,000 in the budget for operations of the relief programme for the last twelve months of 1956-1957, as compared with 1955-1956, is accounted for as follows:

(a) $1,500,000 for special proposals, the first three of which were approved last year by the Advisory Commission to UNRWA and the General Assembly on condition that the money needed to finance them was forthcoming. Their introduction is still considered as highly desirable now as it was a year ago. (Since it is not intended to introduce these items until the last twelve months, no provision is made for them in the first six months budget.) The special proposals consist of the following:

(i) $146,000 under basic subsistence, to provide additional kerosene to camp inhabitants so that the ration (which is for cooking and lighting) will cover twelve months of the year instead of the present five;

(ii) $625,000 under milk and supplementary feeding, to provide one meal per day to each child attending school (if adopted, a further expenditure of $150,000 would be needed for construction and equipment);

(iii) $383,000 under shelter and camp maintenance, to provide tents to one third of the Bedouins in Jordan. The remaining Bedouins would be similarly provided in the ensuing two years;

(iv) $340,000 under health care, to improve health care in general (more staff, more hospital beds, more blood sera, etc., costing $100,000) and to introduce methods for ensuring better control over tuberculosis (costing $240,000);

(b) $2 million under basic subsistence and milk and supplementary feeding, to cover anticipated increases in food prices and, to a lesser extent, increases in freight rates;

(c) Increases and decreases exist in other functions but offset each other. The most significant of the increases are:

(i) $117,000 under health care, mainly to cover increase in rental rates of hospital beds and to increase the number of beds to keep pace with growth in population;

(ii) $127,000 under common services (one half of the total increase), to reflect the transfer of part of the cost of the technical staff (engineers and architects) formerly charged to rehabilitation administration; an increase in public relations materials; the need to keep pace with service requirements of operating divisions; and the need for a more adequate staff to better effect administrative control (such as internal auditing);

(iii) $220,000 under cloth (for children's clothing), in order to make up for the delay in completing the initial programme planned for 1955-1956, and to continue the programme in 1956-1957 at approximately the same rate planned for 1955-1956;

(d) In addition to the above, the cost in general of every relief activity reflects the results of changes in the system of annual salary increments for area staff initiated during 1955-1956. The area salary scales, introduced in 1951 at a time when the life of the Agency was expected to come to an end within three years, originally permitted only two annual increments. Consequently, the majority of the staff had reached the maximum and received no increments after 1954. This state of affairs was having a most unfortunate effect upon the morale of the Palestinian members of the staff--who form the large majority--particularly when they compared their conditions with those of the international staff whose salary scales (based upon those in force at United Nations Headquarters) provided for several more increments. To remedy this situation, new scales were introduced during the latter part of 1955 which permitted smaller increments over a larger number of years; other changes affecting area rates of pay were introduced for the lower grades of staff (unclassified grades) whose salaries were found to be below those for similar categories of workers in the host countries. In addition, there has been a modest increase in the total number employed as a consequence of the increased refugee population both in and outside camps;

(e) On the other hand, by introducing better operational and administrative controls, certain definite economies have been possible in such areas as the consumption of miscellaneous supplies and travel expenditures.

21. No meaningful comparison of budgets can be made for the construction and equipment items in the relief programme. A great majority of those for the first six months represent items originally included in the previous year's budget, and most of the provision for the last twelve months is to continue the shelter programme to replace tents with huts.

22. The increase of over $700,000 in the operations of the rehabilitation programme for the last twelve months of 1956-1957 is accounted for by subtracting the decreases mentioned in (d) and (e) below from the increases mentioned in (a), (b) and (c) below:

(a) An increase of $750,000 under general education as a result of:

(i) A new and higher salary scale for teachers which, while introduced during 1955-1956, was not reflected in the budget for that year;

(ii) An increase in the number of students (particularly in secondary schools where the cost per pupil is higher); and

(iii) An increase in the number of teachers, due to the fact that, in the absence of suitable sites for building, more classes will have to be held in rented premises where rooms frequently cannot accommodate the optimum number of students;

(b) An increase of $545,000 under vocational training, as a result of increasing the number of pupils and revising the operation of the centres in the light of experience;

(c) An increase of $127,000 under common services (see para. 20 (c) (ii) above);

(d A decrease of $326,000 under placement services, mainly as a result of a reduction of migration movement;

(e) A decrease of $335,000 under administration, of which $230,000 is due to charging the estimated costs of the Technical Division to the function or construction job benefiting from the services provided. The true decrease therefore amounts to $105,000, representing mainly a decrease in staff.

23. For the same reasons as those stated in paragraph 21 above, no meaningful comparison can be made for the construction and equipment items in the rehabilitation programme. Practically, the budget for the first six months represents the repetition of items contained in the previous year's budget. To a large extent, the same is true for the last twelve months, especially with reference to vocational training, where construction has been slow because of the initial difficulty in finding suitable sites. For the whole eighteen months, general education and vocational training represent $2,451,000 and special camp facilities $609,000 out of a total of $3,242,000.

24. Minor rehabilitation projects are difficult to forecast, but the amount provided in the last twelve months is the Agency's best estimate of what may be spent if conditions are favourable.

25. Major rehabilitation projects--repeats the figure appearing in last year's budget for the Yarmuk-Jordan Valley and Sinai projects. Feasibility reports have been completed for both and the early implementation of either of them can be effected once agreements are
signed with the Governments concerned.

4. FINANCING THE 1956-1957 BUDGET

26. Although the sum of $76.6 million has been reflected in the 1956-1957 budget for the two major projects (Yarmuk-Jordan Valley and Sinai), no funds will be requested for them until they are definitely needed. Hence, as shown in the table under paragraph 19 above, only $65,430,000 of the budget has to be considered at the moment.

27. After allowing for miscellaneous income, approximately $65 million is needed to be financed by means of contributions.

28. The Agency's request for additional funds for working capital was not acted upon by the General Assembly at its tenth session and, as indicated in paragraphs 11 and 12 above, working capital at the year end was dangerously low. Foreseeing this serious situation, the Negotiating Committee for Extra-Budgetary Funds was given, in early July 1956, an indication of the order of magnitude of the funds required for the eighteen months period 1 July 1956 to 31 December 1957. However, by September 1956, less than $20 million in new pledges (and those were for relief only) had been made, against which less than $11 million had been received.

29. It is very clear from the foregoing that, if the Agency is to continue its present operations, drastic measures must be taken by the Member States constituting the General Assembly. In the absence of adequate working capital, it is essential that contributions be paid in the amounts and at the times they are needed. The experience of the past year indicates that, unless some special efforts to increase contributions are made, the Agency will find itself unable to carry on its programmes through 1957.

30. The Agency requests that, of the $65 million contributions needed for the 1956-1957 budget, $40 million be paid on or before 31 December 1956 and the balance on or before 30 June 1957. As the Agency has no authority to borrow money--even against prospective contributions which might be reasonably assured--it is essential to have the contributions in hand before commitments have to be made or programmes started. On this basis, the suggested timing for the receipt of contributions is extremely tight and it is considered most important that the Assembly devolve means for meeting that schedule.

31. If the General Assembly cannot be assured that sufficient contributions will be forthcoming, and on time, in 1956-1957 to finance the approved budget, it must be prepared for a gradual liquidation of the Agency's operations, with all of the human and political repercussions such action will involve.


ANNEX G

LEGAL ASPECTS OF THE WORK OF THE AGENCY

1. GENERAL LEGAL ACTIVITIES AND PROBLEMS

1. The amount of legal work engendered by the Agency's activities continues to be very substantial and embraces a wide and increasing range of legal problems in the following categories, which are to some extent interrelated:

(a) Matters of general international law arising out of the Agency's legal status;

(b) Matters of commercial law, arising out of the Agency's procurement operations;

(c) Matters of international administrative law arising out of the Agency's relationship with its staff.

2. The legal status of the Agency and its staff is still not fully recognized by some host countries, and the privileges and immunities necessary and customary for an organ of the United Nations are often disputed. In many cases the root of the problem lies in the fact that some Governments do not fully appreciate that international obligations are binding notwithstanding the fact that implementing legislation has not been enacted.

3. Even where the Agency's status is accepted numerous problems are encountered, as mentioned in the last report,63/ because subordinate authorities and even the courts are not always informed of the Agency's legal position. However, some small improvements have occurred.

4. With regard to the Agency's commercial contracts, which numbered nearly three thousand over the period covered by the present report, most differences or disputes arising therefrom continue to be resolved by negotiation. During the year two important cases were referred to arbitration under the procedure provided for in the contracts. In the one a successful settlement was reached during the course of the proceedings. In the other, which arose out of a breach of a large contract for supplies, the Agency succeeded, its claims being upheld by the arbitrator jointly appointed by the parties.

5. A new difficulty which has arisen during the year is the fact that some of the host countries have boycotted certain goods on the ground that the companies supplying them either maintain factories or carry on business in Israel. This boycott has complicated the Agency's task of obtaining some of the necessary supplies required for its various operations. The situation is especially important to the Agency inasmuch as some of the contributing countries as a condition of their contribution provide that the Agency should utilize a certain--and sometimes a large--proportion of it in the purchase of goods from
those countries.

6. The legal problems of an administrative character concern the Agency's staff and its relationship to them. It is inevitable that where a staff of nearly ten thousand employees is concerned many matters arise relating to conditions of service, illness, discipline, accidents, etc., and many miscellaneous claims are filed, some of which involve important questions of principle.

7. Thus, from time to time, staff members bring claims arising out of their employment before the local courts or authorities. On such occasions the Agency has stated that, by virtue of its legal status and the practice of public international organizations, such claims are governed by its own internal rules, which form part of what is known as international administrative law.

8. The procedure of instituting ad hoc appeals boards along the United Nations pattern for hearing staff claims has continued. The Agency's new staff regulations, mentioned in the last report,64/ including provisions for internal administrative remedies for staff, have been prepared and approved, although certain points are still under consideration. Implementing staff rules have also been drafted and are presently being studied.

9. Under the Agency's contracts of insurance against accidents to its staff, the following procedure has been established. The insurance company indemnifies successful claimants in accordance with local law and, where appropriate, such cases are dealt with between the company and the injured person direct. Any differences which may arise between the Agency and the company are to be submitted to arbitration.

10. Attachment or garnishee orders have been served on the Agency's funds in respect of salaries payable to staff members adjudged to be debtors. The Agency has insisted on its jurisdictional immunity from any form of attachment or execution on its assets in accordance witn the general policy of the United Nations. However, the Agency has ensured by administrative means that staff members settle their debts.

11. Because of the special features contained in the case, the United Nations Administrative Tribunal decided by its judgment No. 57 of 9 September 1955, that it was competent to hear and pass judgment upon a particular claim by a former Agency staff member. The Tribunal is proceeding to hear the merits of the applicant's claim.

12. Throughout the year close contact has been maintained with the Office of the Legal Counsel of the United Nations Secretariat, and valuable help has been received both from that Office and also from the legal advisers of the various specialized agencies.

2. LEGAL WORK IN THE VARIOUS HOST COUNTRIES
(a) Egypt and Gaza

13. The position in Gaza became increasingly unsatisfactory throughout the year. First, a serious situation developed with regard to the movement of Agency staff into and out of Gaza. Thus, the Egyptian authorities refused permits for certain Agency officials to enter or re-enter the territory, and withheld action on the applications of certain others. The effect was to prevent members of staff from carrying out their assigned duties, with consequent prejudice to the Agency's operations in Gaza. Although requested to inform the Agency of the reasons for their actions, the authorities in most cases omitted to do so. The Egyptian authorities in Gaza also from time to time refused permission to certain staff to depart from the territory, in cases concerning both travel on official business and leave travel. This not only greatly complicated the efficient execution of the Agency's operations in Gaza, but also severely impaired the morale of the staff stationed there.

14. Secondly, the Agency's operations were disturbed during the year by cases being brought against it in the local courts, notwithstanding its jurisdictional immunity and willingness to arbitrate with third parties or, in cases concerning its staff, to have
recourse to internal administrative procedures. It was necessary for the Agency repeatedly to request that due recognition be given to international law and practice; but the matter had not been satisfactorily settled by the end of the period.
(b) Jordan

15. Jordan became a Member of the United Nations in December 1955. It is expected that the Government's assumption of the responsibilities which result from adhesion to the Charter of the United Nations will make easier the relationship between it and the Agency.

16. The negotiations concerning the revision of the existing agreement governing the relationship between the Agency and the Government of Jordan continued intermittently during the year. These negotiations brought about some useful exchanges of views but, at the end of the period under review, they had not resolved the main points of difference existing between the parties.65/ In the meantime the existing agreement remains in force.

17. During the year under review, civil disorders and riots occurred in Jordan, resulting in loss and damage to property belonging to the Agency and its officials. In accordance with recognized principles of international law, the Agency submitted documented
claims to the Government of Jordan requesting the payment of damages for the material losses. The Government initially declined to recognize its responsibility for such losses, due to a misunderstanding of the legal position involved. The Agency, in renewing its claims, directed the Government's attention to the well-established principle of international law which imposes a special duty for protection of the property of diplomatic missions, of public international organizations, and of their staff.

18. Although some of the problems previously encountered and mentioned in the last report 66/ were solved, old difficulties still persisted. The Government continued to impose restrictions on the Agency's right to import freely into Jordan supplies required
for its programme, and failed to accord full recognition to the legal status of the Agency and its officials. Thus, in two cases during the year where Agency officials unwittingly trespassed on the property of third parties during the course of their official duties, proceedings were brought against them. Fortunately in both cases an amicable settlement was made whereby the plaintiffs withdrew their claims.

19. Moreover, the Agency received no satisfaction from its claim--which it continues to press--in respect of the previous attachment of its assets in a Jordanian Bank in satisfaction of a court judgment in a matter which was not properly within the court's jurisdiction.
(c) Lebanon

20. On 14 December 1955, legislative effect was given to the over-all agreement between the Agency and the Government of Lebanon which, as stated in the last report,67/ had been concluded in the form of an exchange of notes signed on 26 November 1954. Now that this agreement has been ratified and promulgated it is hoped that full implementation of its provisions will follow.

21. With regard to the financial clauses of this agreement, which involve accounting and technical procedures, it is still too early to assess results. The Agency has, however, paid the agreed amount of expenses incurred by the Lebanese Central Palestine Refugee Committee. At the same time, good progress has been made towards obtaining the refund of taxes and charges which, under the agreement, the Government has undertaken to reimburse.

22. Notwithstanding the provisions of the agreement relating to the status of the Agency's officials and the fact that the Government is a party to the Convention on Privileges and Immunities, there still remain certain divergences between Lebanese procedures currently applicable to such officials and the accepted international practice with respect to United Nations staff.

23. During the year a number of incidents occurred in Lebanon which caused concern to the Agency with regard to the security of its installations and property and the safety and protection of its personnel. The Agency requested that the necessary steps be taken by
the Government in the light of its obligations under international law to ensure against the recurrence of such incidents. Appropriate assurances to this end have been received from the Government.
(d) Syria

24. Negotiations with a view to the revision of the agreement governing the relations between the Agency and the Syrian Government were not resumed during the year. The Agency attempted to improve and to clarify its position, particularly with regard to a number of serious difficulties which prejudiced the Agency's local operations. For example, problems of staff appointments, the movement of Agency officials within Syria, the importation of supplies, the imposition of export taxes and the Agency's legal position in general required an undue amount of attention. Also during the past year a number of actions were brought before the Syrian courts, leading to serious misunderstandings as to the Agency's legal status. In one case, a court erroneously held that the Agency's jurisdictional immunity applied only to criminal and not to civil cases; and, in another instance, a court mistakenly declared an Agency official to be an employee of the Syrian Government.

25. During the year, the Agency was the subject of virulent attacks in the Egyptian and Syrian Press, reporting a statement by a Minister of the Syrian Government that the Agency's policy was to exterminate the refugees. This accusation, in addition to its defamatory nature, tends to encourage unrest and thus is clearly contrary to the Government's duty under international law to protect the Agency's property and the security of its officials.

26. With regard to the imposition of taxation on the salaries of the Agency's staff in Syria, a list was formally transmitted to the Syrian Government specifying the names of such staff in Syria to whom the provisions of articles V and VII of the Convention on the Privileges and Immunities apply and who, accordingly, are exempt from income tax on the salaries and emoluments which they receive from the Agency. To date, the only understanding which has been reached on this matter with the Government is the recognition that the Agency could in no circumstances act as tax-collector for the Government, such action being contrary to international law and to the practice of the United Nations.

27. In the preceding annual report,68/ mention was made of judgments entered by Syrian courts against the Agency in respect of claims by former employees for terminal indemnities. During the year under review, this outstanding matter was amicably settled.


ANNEX H

CO-OPERATION WITH OTHER UNITED NATIONS ORGANIZATIONS

1. GENERAL

1. During the year under review, full co-operation between the Agency and other parts of the United Nations has continued. Again the Agency wishes to express its appreciation of the advice, assistance and co-operation it has received from specialized agencies and other organizations, as well as from departments and offices at Headquarters, New York.

2. All United Nations bodies and specialized agencies represented in Beirut have their offices in the same compound, and are provided either free or at cost with various administrative services by the Agency.

3. During the year, the Agency was represented at a meeting of the Consultative Committee on Public Information.
2. UNITED NATIONS BODIES

(a) United Nations Children's Fund

4. The Fund has continued its interest in the welfare of Arab refugees from Palestine, but during the past year it contributed no goods direct to the Agency's programme.

5. Among the persons in need, not within the Agency's mandate, who were assisted by UNICEF were 44,400 mothers and children living in the Gaza Strip, and about 45,000 inhabitants of the villages along the demarcation line in Jordan. All these persons, though they are not refugees under the accepted definition, have had their livelihood affected by the Palestine conflict. UNICEF uses the Agency's services for the distribution of supplies, but the cost of services in Jordan over and above what the Agency requires for its own purposes is charged to UNICEF.

6. In accordance with an agreement made between the Agency and UNICEF, the latter acts from time to time on UNRWA'S behalf as a purchasing agent for general goods, including medical supplies, and in some cases for commodities for the basic ration. UNICEF also acts as a liaison between the Agency and United States Government departments for the procurement of surplus commodities, and also provides the Agency with reports showing market trends.

7. Negotiations are going on between UNICEF, WHO, UNRWA and the Government of Jordan concerning a project for the eradication of malaria in that country, for which UNICEF has provided vehicles, drugs, and equipment.
(b) United Nations Conciliation Commission for Palestine

8. In accordance with General Assembly resolution 916 (X), the Agency has continued its consultation with the Commission in the best interests of their respective tasks. The unblocking of refugee bank accounts in Israel has continued, about four-fifths of the funds in question having been released. The release of valuables on safe deposit is also continuing.69/ In both cases the Agency has taken part in discussions between the banks concerned, the Conciliation Commission, and the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization. The Agency has acted as a collecting and forwarding point for the refugees' claims.
(c) United Nations information centres

9. During the year under review, the Agency and the Information Centres have been in close contact. The centres have paid particular attention to the Agency's work and are kept up-to-date concerning all aspects of it. They are thus in a good position to deal with inquiries.
(d) United Nations Technical Assistance Administration

10. The arrangement has continued during the past year whereby the head of the Economic Planning Unit within the Jordan Government is provided by TAA, the Unit being financed by the Agency.
(e) United Nations Truce Supervision Organization

11. Consultation and exchange of information on matters of common concern has continued as during the previous year.

3. SPECIALIZED AGENCIES
(a) Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

12. Eleven senior members of the Agency's education staff are seconded from UNESCO which, as in previous years, maintained its close and fruitful relations with the Agency. UNESCO continued to take a practical interest in all aspects of the UNRWA/UNESCO educational programme for schools and to give the Agency technical help whenever it was
needed.

13. During the fiscal period 1955-1956 contributions continued to be received under the UNESCO gift coupon arrangement.
(b) Food and Agriculture Organization

14. FAO has provided an expert for work in Jordan on questions of land tenure; and its hydrologist in Jordan has helped to find water for the Kalandia Vocational Training Centre. The Agency was represented at a conference held in Cairo by FAO in connexion with its arid zone research programme.
(c) International Bank for Reconstruction and Development

15. During the past fiscal year, the International Bank prepared reports on economic development in Jordan and Syria. The Agency made a number of special studies relevant to the reports, and provided the Bank with certain other facilities.
(d) World Health Organization

16. The provision of technical advice and the secondment of four senior members of the Agency's health staff has continued. The Agency sponsored and financed a nutrition survey among refugees which was carried out by WHO experts.
Notes

1/ A. Final report of the United Nations Economic Survey Mission for the Middle East
(28 December 1949) (A/AC.25/6, parts I and II).

B. Report of the Secretary-General on Assistance to Palestine Refugees: see Official Records of the General Assembly, Fourth Session, Ad Hoc Political Committee, Annexes, vol. II, p. 14 (A/1060).

C. Reports of the Director of UNRWA and special reports of the Director and Advisory Commission to the General Assembly:

(a) Ibid., Fifth Session, Supplement No. 19 (A/1451/Rev.1);
(b) Ibid., Sixth Session, Supplements Nos. 16 and 16A (A/1905 and Add.1);
(c) Ibid., Seventh Session, Supplements Nos. 13 and 13A (A/2171 and Add.1);
(d) Ibid., Eighth Session, Supplements Nos. 12 and 12A (A/2470 and Add.1);
(e) Ibid., Ninth Session, Supplements Nos. 17 and 17A (A/2717 and Add.1);
(f) Ibid., Tenth Session, Supplements Nos. 15, 15A and 15B (A/2978 and Add.1).

D. Pertinent General Assembly resolutions:
194 (III) of 11 December 1948;
212 (III) of 19 November 1948;
302 (IV) of 8 December 1949;
393 (V) of 2 December 1950;
513 (VI) of 26 January 1952;
614 (VII) of 6 November 1952;
720 (VIII) of 27 November 1953;
818 (IX) of 4 December 1954;
916 (X) of 3 December 1955.

2/ A/2717/Add.1, para. 32. The Commission's membership consists of representatives of the Governments of Belgium, Egypt, France, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the United States of America.

3/ A/2978, para. 5.

4/ A/2978, para. 36.

5/ Resolution 393 (V) of 2 December 1950, para. 4.

6/ Resolution 916 (X) of 3 December 1955.

7/ A/2978/Add.1.

8/ Resolution 916 (X), paras. 5 and 6.

9/ A/2978, para. 9.

10/ A/2978/Add.1, section VI.

11/ Resolution 916 (X), para. 4.

12/ Official Records of the General Assembly, Tenth Session, Annexes, agenda item 22, document A/3017, para. 11.

13/ A/2978, para. 13.

14/ A/2978, para. 12.

15/ Ibid., para. 14.

16/ Annex A, table 3.

17/ A/2978, para. 16.

18/ A/3017, para. 11.

19/ A/2978, paras. 31 and 32.

20/ A/3017, paras. 11 and 12.

21/ See para. 89 below.

22/ A/2978, para. 34.

23/ Ibid., para. 12 (b).

24/ A/2978, para. 40.

25/ For example, in resolution 393 (V), para. 4.

26/ A/2978, paras. 44 to 49.

27/ See para. 71 below.

28/ A/2978, paras. 37 and 38.

29/ LS 10 = $2.82 = £1 (approximately).

30/ JD 1 = £1 = $2.80.

31/ A/2978, paras. 61-64.

32/ See para. 45 above.

33/ See para. 57 above.

34/ A/2978, para. 59 and annex G (to last year's report).

35/ Director's statement to the Ad Hoc Political Committee, 14 November 1955.

36/ A/2717 and A/2978.

37/ A/2978, para. 56.

38/ A/3017.

39/ Official Records of the General Assembly, Eleventh Session, Supplement No. 6B (A/3211).

40/ See paras. 49 and 50 above.

41/ See paras. 93 and 94.

42/ A/2978, annex F, para. 18.

43/ A/2978, annex F, para. 16.

44/ Ibid., para. 14.

45/ A/2978, paras. 22 to 24.

46/ A/2978/Add.1.

47/ Resolution 916 (X), para. 6.

48/ Nos. 12 and 13.

49/ 10 dunums = 1 hectare; 4.047 dunums = 1 acre.

50/ A/2978, annex D, para. 12.

51/ A/2978, annex D, para. 14.

52/ A/2978, annex D, para. 16.

53/ A/2978, annex D, paras. 19-23.

54/ A/2978, annex D, para. 29.

55/ A/2978, para. 37, and annex D, paras. 33-35; A/2717, para. 30, and annex C, paras. 44-47.

56/ A/2978, annex E, para. 4.

57/ A/2978, annex E, para. 9.

58/ A/2978, annex E, para. 28.

59/ A/2978, annex E, para. 24.

60/ A/2978, annex E, para. 29.

61/ A/2978, annex E, para. 7.

62/ Official Records of the General Assembly, Eleventh Session, Supplement No. 6B (A/3211).

63/ A/2978, annex G, para. 1.

64/ A/2978, annex G, para. 11.

65/ A/2978, annex G, para. 16.

66/ Ibid., paras. 17-19.

67/ A/2978, annex G, para. 21.

68/ A/2978, annex G, para. 24 (ii).

69/ Fifteenth progress report of the Commission; A/3199, 4 October 1956.


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