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Source: United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA)
28 January 2011



GCC Through the Islamic Development Bank Joins UNRWA in Gaza Housing Project

Amman — The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) in its capacity as Coordinator for the Programme of the Gulf Cooperation Council for the Reconstruction of Gaza and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) have signed an agreement worth US$ 6.1 million supporting major emergency shelter repairs and reconstruction in the Gaza Strip. A delegation from the IDB led by Mr El Mansour Feten, Director of Trust Funds Department, visited Jordan recently to sign the agreement with Mr Peter Ford, Representative of the UNRWA Commissioner-General.

The project will repair 373 refugee houses in Gaza damaged by Israeli attacks. The Israeli attack on Gaza between December and January 2009 made many thousands homeless and condemned thousands of others to living in houses with gaping holes in the wall and other forms of damage. Through the new project almost 2,000 refugees will see their quality of life greatly improved, although thousands of others remain homeless or unable to repair their war-damaged houses.

The agreement follows an earlier, similar, agreement signed in July 2010 worth US$ 6.5 million, for the repair of 852 houses.

Welcoming the agreement, Mr Filippo Grandi, Commissioner-General of UNRWA, said: “The two housing agreements represent the first fruits of a vitally important new strategic partnership which has been opened between UNRWA and the GCC Gaza Reconstruction Committee acting through the IDB. The agreements will improve the living conditions of thousands of Palestinians who were forced to live through heavy bombardment and saw their houses severely damaged. They and UNRWA are very grateful to the GCC and the IDB.”

Background information
UNRWA provides assistance, protection and advocacy for some 4.7 million registered Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and the occupied Palestinian territory, pending a solution to their plight. The Agency’s services encompass education, health care, social safety-net, camp infrastructure and improvement, community support, microfinance and emergency response, including in times of armed conflict.

UNRWA is funded almost entirely by contributions from States. The Agency’s core budget for 2010-2011 stands at $1.23 billion. In 2009, emergency appeals for the West Bank, Gaza and Lebanon amounted to $827.4 million.


For more information please contact:

Peter Ford
Representative of the UNRWA Commissioner-General
Mobile: +962 (0) 77 676 0062
Office: +962 (0) 65 80 8521
p.ford@unrwa.org

Sami Mshasha
UNRWA Arabic Spokesperson
Mobile: +972 (0)54 216 8295
Office: +972 (0)2 589 0724
s.mshasha@unrwa.org



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