As Lebanon plunged deeper into one of the world’s worst economic meltdowns, the United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) last week sounded the alarm about a major funding gap that could further cut access to basic services for about 200,000 Palestinian refugees.
The United Kingdom alone cut more than half its funding to UNRWA from 42.5 million pounds ($56.5m) in 2020 to 20.8 million ($27.6) this past year, while Gulf states that once contributed $200m in 2018 only provided $20m this year.
UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini called it an “existential crisis” and warned the funding shortage could dramatically reduce access to education and basic healthcare services.
Olivier De Schutter – UN special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights – said camps in Beirut “suffer from a chronically decaying infrastructure as a result of competing sources of basic service delivery”.
“These communities have been living in the camps for at least three generations, and they deserve better – their right to work, own property, education.”
Refugees in Shatila camp pushed to the brink amid aid crisis | Humanitarian Crises | Al Jazeera
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