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Source: United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA)
1 October 2006


UNRWA
PRESS RELEASE
Press Release No. Syr/05/2006
1 October 2006
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

UNRWA Commissioner-General visits Syria


Commissioner-General Karen AbuZayd visited Syria from 30 September-1 October. During her brief visit to Syria, Ms Abu Zayd had meetings with Dr Diala al-Haj Aref, Minister of Social Affairs and Labour, Mr Bashar al-Shaar, Minister of State for Syrian Red Crescent Affairs, and Dr Faisal al-Miqdad, Deputy Foreign Minister. Ms Abu Zayd updated Syrian Government officials with latest developments in UNRWA and thanked Syria’s Government and people for hosting more than 3000 Palestinian refugees during the Lebanon crisis. She also appreciated efforts of UNRWA staff in coping with the crisis.

In her opening remarks with UN Country team and later with donor representatives at Damascus Training Centre, Ms AbuZayd thanked their countries for the continued assistance and contributions to UNRWA over the years. The donor representatives praised the Agency for its ability to respond quickly to the new challenges it faces under rapidly changing circumstances. Ms AbuZayd attended an Iftar at the Damascus Training Centre and enjoyed with the guests a musical performance of Palestinian folklore dances by the students of the Agency’s Nimreen Music Children’s Centre.

Ms AbuZayd was the Iftar guest hosted by UNRWA at the women’s programme centre in Khan Dannoun Camp attended by Mr ‘Ali Mustafa, Director-General of the General Authority for Palestinian Arab Refugees (GAPAR), a number of Palestinians from Khan Dannoun camp and UNRWA staff. “UNRWA has the experience to assist Palestine refugees, aware of their needs and has the confidence of the people and the capacity to respond” Mr Mustafa said. Ms Abu Zayd also briefed the refugee community on UNRWA’s operations and economic and social conditions in the occupied Palestinian territories.

Meeting the media, the Commissioner-General, Ms AbuZayd expressed her appreciation for the Syrian Government exemplary co-operation with UNRWA to provide the best services to the Palestinian refugees in Syria.

UNRWA, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Arab Refugees, is a humanitarian relief and development agency providing education, health care, social services, micro-credit and emergency relief to some 4,350,000 million Palestine refugees living in the Gaza Strip, West Bank, Jordan, Lebanon, and the Syrian Arab Republic. In Syria, the Agency provides assistance to some 433,000 refugees.


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