July 4, 2007
The Government of Japan is to extend an emergency aid grant of almost ¥ 81.2 million ($700,000) through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East as humanitarian assistance for refugees affected by the armed standoff at Nahr El-Bared refugee camp in northern Lebanon.
The standoff between the Lebanese army and radical group Fatah Al-Islam began on May 20th, and more than 30,000 Palestine refugees living there have fled to other camps and live in dire conditions with poor sanitation, food and water scarcity and housing shortages. This emergency humanitarian aid aims to improve the living conditions of these refugees.
In view of the plight of the Palestine refugees, Japan has continuously extended humanitarian assistance through UNRWA since 1953. Over the last year the Government of Japan has contributed $1.8 million to UNRWA as emergency assistance to improve medical care for the Palestine refugees in the Gaza Strip and $4.3 million as food aid in March 2007.
This aid will be spent on providing accommodation, including temporary shelters, and on essential goods such as hygiene kits, which are urgently needed by the refugees.