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*Note:  Arab countries contribute a small amount to the General budget.  Their contributions increase with donations to the Non Program Budget, for example in 2016 Saudi Arabia contributed $22,000,000 to the General budget then a further $126,000,000 to the ‘Non Program budget giving a total of $148,000,000  
Click her for Donor Chart


TOP 10 DONORS TO UNRWA
Global Policy Forum


This table compiled by GPF Senior Research Fellow Klaus Hüfner lists the Top 10 Donors to UN Relief Works Agency (UNRWA) in $US millions and percentages (received, voluntary contributions). Since 1974, the US has been the biggest donor to the UN agency followed by the UK and Sweden. US funding for the UN agency has been a major topic of discussion following Palestine’s admission to UNESCO. In 2014, the US gave $408,75 million to UNRWA; however, US funding for the UNRWA is likely to be untouched since the agency is not a membership-based organization, which means that Palestine will not be able to join.

The meaning of ‘non Program Budget ’ varies annually.  

For example in 2016 it was divided into
EA OPT, Syria Appeal, Gaza Major Repair and Reconstruction, Projects.

Click on the year in the table above to see the breakdown for each year.  This will take you to the Donor List and you will see the amount under each heading


CREATION OF UNWRA
Wikipedia

Created in December 1949, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) is a relief and human development agency which supports more than 5 million registered Palestinian refugees, and their descendants, who fled or were expelled from their homes during the 1948 Palestine war as well as those who fled or were expelled during and following the 1967 Six Day war. Originally intended to provide jobs on public works projects and direct relief, today UNRWA provides education, health care, and social services to the population it supports. Aid is provided in five areas of operation: Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem; aid for Palestinian refugees outside these five areas is provided by UNHCR.

It also provided relief to Jewish and Arab Palestine refugees inside the state of Israel following the 1948 conflict until the Israeli government took over responsibility for Jewish refugees in 1952. In the absence of a solution to the Palestine refugee problem, the General Assembly has repeatedly renewed UNRWA's mandate, most recently extending it until 30 June 2017.

UNRWA is the only agency dedicated to helping refugees from a specific region or conflict and is separate from UNHCR. Formed in 1950, UNHCR is the main UN refugee agency, which is responsible for aiding other refugees all over the world. Unlike UNRWA, UNHCR has a specific mandate to aid its refugees to eliminate their refugee status by local integration in current country, resettlement in a third country or repatriation when possible. Only UNRWA allows refugee status to be inherited by descendants.

UNRWA has had to develop a working definition of "refugee" to allow it to provide humanitarian assistance. Its definition does not cover final status.

Palestine refugees are defined as "persons whose regular place of residence was Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948, and who lost both home and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict."

UNRWA services are available to all those living in its area of operations who meet this definition, who are registered with the Agency, and who need assistance. The descendants of Palestine refugee males, including adopted children, are also eligible for registration as refugees. When the Agency began operations in 1950, it was responding to the needs of about 750,000 Palestine refugees. Today, some 5 million Palestine refugees are registered as eligible for UNRWA service.

See also ‘The MiddleEast Piece - What is UNWRA?


SEMI-STATE
fanak, Chronicle of the Middle East and North Africa

In retrospect, UNRWA is the only UN agency to have worked for such a long time in the exclusive service of one particular category of refugees – the ‘Palestine refugees’. Over the years, it has gradually established itself as a semi-state institution in the fullest sense, taking on responsibilities traditionally assigned to national governments. Its staff, the vast majority of whom come from the refugee communities, has grown fivefold since 1951, from about six thousand to 30,000 in 2009. However, UNRWA’s linkage with the refugees is only predicated on humanitarian considerations. Its definition of a ‘Palestine refugee’ was elaborated for operational purposes only. It did not determine who is a Palestinian refugee, but rather who is eligible for its assistance programs. While it has evolved over time, its core elements have remained the same: normal place of residence in Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948, and loss of means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict. Descendents of male Palestine refugees have also been eligible to register on a voluntary basis with UNRWA. Since 1951, the number of ‘Palestine refugees’ has increased fivefold, from 876,000 refugees to 4.7 million refugees in 2008. This represents about 90.8 percent of the total number of refugees in the Middle East; and about three-quarters of the estimated total Palestinian refugee population disseminated around the world.

From the outset, UNRWA’s assistance mandate has been regarded by the refugees not just as a temporary international charity venture, but as an entitlement and, even more, a recognition by the international community of their status as refugees endowed with vested rights, namely the right of return to Palestine and/or to receive compensation as recommended in UNGA resolution 194 (III) (11 December 1948). UNRWA’s identification with the political dimensions of the Palestinian refugee issue may have been reinforced by its status as the only significant UN stakeholder in charge of Palestinian refugee affairs, following the de facto demise of the United Nations Conciliation Commission for Palestine (UNCCP) in the early 1950s , and the de jure exclusion of the Palestinian refugees from the UNHCR coverage. As a result, although registration with UNRWA was never officially meant to have any political implications, it has nevertheless been regarded by the refugees as a legal justification for their vested humanitarian and political rights. This is understandable since the ‘registration card’ it provides has constituted an official – and often unique – piece of documentary evidence attesting to their link with pre-1948 Palestine.

UNWRA ANNUAL REPORT 2016 - GAZA

UNWRA

ThIs report describes the current situation for each area.  As an example their Gaza report is reproduced below.

The Gaza Strip is home to a population of approximately 1.9 million people, including 1.3 million Palestine refugees.

For the last decade, the socioeconomic situation in Gaza has been in steady decline. The blockade on land, air and sea imposed by Israel following the Hamas takeover of the Gaza Strip in 2007, entered its 10th year in June 2016 and continues to have a devastating effect as access to markets and people’s movement to and from the Gaza Strip remain severely restricted.

Years of conflict and blockade have left 80 per cent of the population dependent on international assistance. The economy and its capacity to create jobs have been devastated, resulting in the impoverishment and de-development of a highly skilled and well-educated society. The average unemployment rate is well over 41 per cent – one of the highest in the world, according to the World Bank. The number of Palestine refugees relying on UNRWA for food aid has increased from fewer than 80,000 in 2000 to almost one million today.

Over half a million Palestine refugees in Gaza live in the eight recognized Palestine refugee camps, which have one of the highest population densities in the world.

Operating through approximately 12,500 staff in over 300 installations across the Gaza Strip, UNRWA delivers education, health and mental health care, relief and social services, microcredit and emergency assistance to registered Palestine refugees.

On 7 July 2014, a humanitarian emergency was declared by UNRWA in the Gaza Strip, following a severe escalation in hostilities, involving intense Israeli aerial and navy bombardment and Palestinian rocket fire. Hostilities de-escalated following an open-ended ceasefire which entered into force on 26 August 2014. The scale of human loss, destruction, devastation and displacement caused by this third conflict within seven years was catastrophic, unprecedented and unparalleled in Gaza.

UNRWA mounted an extraordinary response during the 50 days of hostilities which highlighted its unique position as the largest UN organization in the Gaza Strip and the only UN Agency that undertakes direct implementation.

The human, social and economic costs of the last hostilities are sit against a backdrop of a society already torn by wide-spread poverty, frustration and anger, heightening vulnerability and political instability. The compounded effects of the blockade and repeated armed conflicts and violence have also had a less visible, but quite profound, psychological impact on the people of Gaza. Among Palestine refugee children, UNRWA estimates that a minimum of 30 per cent require some form of structured psychosocial intervention. Their most common symptoms are: nightmares, eating disorders, intense fear, bed wetting.

In recent years, UNRWA has made significant improvements to its services in Gaza, such as its schools of excellence and excellent health services initiatives. It also better targets its assistance to the poorest of the poor through the implementation of a proxy-means tested poverty survey. UNRWA continues to:



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UNHCR  (The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), also known as the UN Refugee Agency)
Wikipedia

UNHCR was established on 14 December 1950 and succeeded the earlier United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration. The agency is mandated to lead and co-ordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee problems worldwide. Its primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees. It strives to ensure that everyone can exercise the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another state, with the option to return home voluntarily, integrate locally or to resettle in a third country.

UNHCR's mandate has gradually been expanded to include protecting and providing humanitarian assistance to whom it describes as other persons "of concern," including internally displaced persons (IDPs) who would fit the legal definition of a refugee under the 1951 United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and 1967 Protocol, the 1969 Organization for African Unity Convention, or some other treaty if they left their country, but who presently remain in their country of origin. UNHCR presently has major missions in Lebanon, South Sudan, Chad/Darfur, Democratic Republic of Congo, Iraq, Afghanistan as well as Kenya to assist and provide services to IDPs and refugees in camps and in urban settings.

UNHCR maintains a database of refugee information, ProGres, which was created during the Kosovo War in the 1990s. The database today contains data on over 11 million refugees, or about 11% of all displaced persons globally. The database contains biometric data, including fingerprints and iris scans and is used to determine aid distribution for recipients.The results of using biometric verification has been successful. When introduced in Kenyan refugee camps of Kakuma and Dadaab in the year 2013, the UN World Food Programme was able to eliminate $1.4m in waste and fraud.

To achieve its mandate, the UNHCR engaged in activities both in the countries of interest and in countries with donors. For example, the UNHCR hosts expert roundtables to discuss issues of concern to the international refugee community.

UNHCR REFUGEE DEFINITION

A refugee is someone who has been forced to flee his or her country because of persecution, war, or violence. A refugee has a well-founded fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership in a particular social group. Most likely, they cannot return home or are afraid to do so. War and ethnic, tribal and religious violence are leading causes of refugees fleeing their countries.

UNHCR TRENDS AT A GLANCE 2016

By the end of 2016, 65.6 million individuals were forcibly displaced worldwide as a result of persecution, conflict, violence, or human rights violations. That was an increase of 300,000 people over the previous year, and the world’s forcibly displaced population
remained at a record high.


65.6 MILLION  FORCIBLY DISPLACED WORLDWIDE
as a result of persecution, conflict, violence, or human rights violations

22.5 million people who were refugees at end-2016

17.2 million under UNHCR’s mandate

5.3 million Palestinian refugees registered by UNRWA

40.3 million internally displaced people

2.8 million asylum-seekers


10.3 MILLION NEWLY DISPLACED

During the year, 10.3 million people were newly displaced by conflict or persecution.
This included 6.9 million individuals displaced within the borders of their own countries
and 3.4 million new refugees and new asylum-seekers.

20 NEW DISPLACEMENTS EVERY MINUTE

The number of new displacements was equivalent
to 20 people being forced to flee their homes
every minute of 2016, or 28,300 every day.

10 MILLION PEOPLE

UNHCR estimated that at least 10 million people were stateless
or at risk of statelessness in 2016.
However, data captured by governments and reported to UNHCR
were limited to 3.2 million stateless individuals in 75 countries.

51% CHILDREN

Children below 18 years of age constituted about half of the refugee population
in 2016, as in recent years.
Children make up an estimated 31 per cent of the total world population.

84% HOSTED BY DEVELOPING REGIONS

Developing regions hosted 84 per cent of the world’s refugees under UNHCR’s mandate,
with about 14.5 million people.
The least developed countries provided asylum to a growing proportion,
with 28 per cent of the global total (4.9 million refugees).

552,200 REFUGEES RETURNED

Refugee returns increased from recent years.
During 2016, 552,200 refugees returned to their countries of origin,
often in less than ideal conditions. T
he number is more than double the previous year and most returned to Afghanistan (384,000).

1 IN 6 PEOPLE A REFUGEE IN LEBANON

Lebanon continued to host the largest number of refugees relative to its national population, where 1 in 6 people was a refugee.
Jordan (1 in 11) and Turkey (1 in 28) ranked second and third, respectively.

55% FROM THREE COUNTRIES

Altogether, more than half (55 per cent) of all refugees worldwide
came from just three countries:

Syrian Arab Republic (5.5 million)

Afghanistan (2.5 million)

South Sudan (1.4 million)

2.9 MILLION PEOPLE HOSTED BY TURKEY

For the third consecutive year,
Turkey hosted the largest number of refugees worldwide, with 2.9 million people.
It was followed by Pakistan (1.4 million), Lebanon (1.0 million),
the Islamic Republic of Iran (979,400), Uganda (940,800), and Ethiopia (791,600).

2.0 MILLION NEW ASYLUM CLAIMS

The number of new asylum claims remained high at 2.0 million.
With 722,400 such claims, Germany was the world’s largest recipient
of new individual applications,
followed by the United States of America (262,000), Italy (123,000), and Turkey (78,600).

189,300  REFUGEES FOR RESETTLEMENT

In 2016, UNHCR referred 162,600 refugees to States for resettlement.
According to government statistics, 37 countries admitted 189,300 refugees for resettlement during the year, including those resettled with UNHCR’s assistance.
The United States of America admitted the highest number (96,900).

75,000 UNACCOMPANIED OR SEPARATED CHILDREN

Unaccompanied or separated children – mainly Afghans, and Syrians –
lodged some 75,000 asylum applications in 70 countries during the year,
although this figure is assumed to be an underestimate.
Germany received the highest number of these applications (35,900).

SOUTH SUDAN

The fastest-growing refugee population was spurred by the crisis in South Sudan.
This group grew by 64 per cent during the second half of 2016
from 854,100 to over 1.4 million, the majority of whom were children.

SYRIA

More than half of the Syrian population lived in displacement in 2016,
either displaced across borders or within their own borders.









Reassessing UNWRA

Videos  UNWRA and UNHCR

Expulsion of the Jews and Christians from Arab Countries



















2015

622

625

1247






100

104
Donors


159

222


381





31

1


112

25



137




11

2


51

49




100



7

3


21

75





96


8

4


26

26






52

4

0












2016

624

619

1243






100

105
Donors


152

216


368





30

1


114

46



160




13

2


44

29




73



6

5


22

126





148


12

3


29

0






29

2

0

Where people come from, where they flee to – and why they keep moving. New Internationalist gives a worldwide context for refugee flows with this zoomable infograph from our Jan/Feb magazine ( 1 Jan 2016).


UNWRA and UNHCR