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To: Senator Hon. Marise Payne, Minister for Foreign Affairs

Restore funding for UNRWA

Restore funding for UNRWA

The Australian Government has halved its contribution to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA). The 2020-2021 budget has slashed funding from $20m to $10m.

Humanitarian assistance should be allocated according to need, no matter where it occurs across the globe. Australia must restore these vital funds.

UNRWA global funding is under threat with the Trump administration cutting Palestinian aid in 2018.

Without consistent, reliable funding UNRWA will not be able to fulfill its UN-mandated mission to protect and assist a vulnerable population of 5.6 million Palestinian refugees until there is a just and lasting solution to their plight.

Why is this important?

In a region rife with conflicts, and now battling the health and socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19, UNRWA stands as a vital source of regional stability. UNRWA has been recognised as a major contributor in the containment of the COVID-19 virus, particularly in preventing its spread through densely populated Palestinian refugee camps in the region.

Australia has a long history of support to the Palestinian people. Australian aid to UNRWA is a practical and genuine demonstration of our long-standing support for the Middle East peace process. This support provides basic services (education and health), livelihood opportunities and protection for Palestinian refugees in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Syrian, Lebanon and Jordan.

We call on the Australian Government to restore funding for UNRWA and uphold its commitment to Palestinian refugees and peace in the Middle East.

Reasons for signing

  • The amount allocated by the government is a pittance and suggests that the plight of the Palestine refugees is of no account. The suffering of these people has been on going for too long. If we want a peaceful just world then we have to have government that demonstrates this, increase funding to an amount that will make a difference.
  • Among other things, I heard yesterday that COVID vaccine in Israel will not be given to Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza, that is inhumane and obviously unjust. Irma T., Sydney
  • Israel evil oppression of the Palestinians is the greatest ongoing injustice since WW2, happening on our watch, in our time. We have a duty to do all we can to stop it.


2020-11-16 22:36:33 +1100

500 signatures reached

2020-11-15 23:11:07 +1100

100 signatures reached

2020-11-13 08:01:36 +1100

50 signatures reached

2020-11-12 20:25:38 +1100

25 signatures reached

2020-11-12 20:19:43 +1100

10 signatures reached