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United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA)
17 February 2007
Press Release No. 02/2007
08 February 2007
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
UNRWA Deputy Commissioner-General Visits Syria
UNRWA Deputy Commissioner-General Filippo Grandi arrived in Syria today, for the first of four days of high-level meetings and visits. During his visit, Mr Grandi will meet with Syrian Government officials to provide a briefing on UNRWA programmes and activities in all fields of operation, and to provide an update on UNRWA’s Organizational Development (OD) plan. The OD plan is an UNRWA initiative targeting internal Agency reform which will ultimately improve the services provided by UNRWA to the Palestine refugee community. Mr. Grandi will also meet with UNRWA senior and middle management to hold discussions regarding the OD process.
The Deputy Commissioner-General will also tour UNRWA installations in Damascus, Derra and Latakkia, and meet with UNRWA staff as well as members of the broader Palestine refugee community. A tour will be made of the UNRWA-contracted Italian Hospital in the company of HE Francesco Cerulli, Ambassador of Italy to Syria, and Mr Panos Moumtzis, Director of UNRWA Affairs in Syria. Mr. Grandi will meet with all UN Agencies in Syria, including the UN Resident Co-ordinator.
On 20 February, in the company of the Deputy Minister of Education, Mr. Sulieman Al-Khatib, HE Masaki Kinieda, Ambassador from Japan, and Mr. Ali Mustafa, General Director of the General Authority of Palestine Arab Refugees, the Deputy Commissioner-General will visit UNRWA’s Education Development Centre. He will also attend the opening ceremony of the Japanese-funded Jerusalem/Yazour School computer lab and multi-purpose classroom. Following this event, the Deputy Commissioner-General will attend an ICT conference between Palestinian and Japanese students, and a softball training session for Palestinian refugee girls by the Japanese International Co-operation Agency (JICA).
A special highlight of the Deputy Commissioner-General's trip will be the presentation of award certificates to Agency staff, in recognition for 25 years of service with the Agency, during visits to UNRWA installations.
UNRWA is a humanitarian and human development Agency providing education, health care, social services, micro-credit and emergency relief to over 4 million registered refugees living in the Gaza Strip, West Bank, Jordan, Lebanon and the Syrian Arab Republic. In Syria, the Agency provides assistance to over 430,000 refugees.
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