Secretary-General’s message on International Day of Solidarity with Palestinian People

UNRWA

New York, 29 November 2022

We commemorate the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People at a time of diminished hope for peace.

I am deeply saddened by the growing number of Palestinian civilians who have lost their lives in the spiral of violence engulfing the occupied West Bank. Each casualty fuels fear and yet more violence. I urge all parties to take immediate steps to reduce tensions and break this deadly cycle.

The long-standing drivers of conflict – including the ongoing occupation, settlement expansion, home demolitions and evictions – heighten anger, despair, and hopelessness.

Meanwhile, Gaza continues to endure debilitating closures and humanitarian crises. I reiterate my call on the parties to engage to end the closures of Gaza and improve living conditions of all Palestinians.

UNRWA remains a vital lifeline for Palestine refugees.

I commend the donors for their support and urge all to step up and provide predictable and sufficient funding to enable UNRWA to fully deliver on its mandate.

The United Nations’ position is clear: peace must advance – the occupation must end.

We are steadfast in our commitment to realize the vision of two States – Israel and Palestine – living side by side in peace and security, with Jerusalem as the capital of both States.

Together, let us reaffirm our support to the Palestinian people in their quest to achieve their inalienable rights and build a future of peace, justice, security, and dignity for all.

Background Information:

UNRWA is the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East.

The United Nations General Assembly established UNRWA in 1949 with a mandate to provide humanitarian assistance and protection to registered Palestine refugees in the Agency’s area of operations pending a just and lasting solution to their plight. UNRWA operates in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, The Gaza Strip, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria.

Tens of thousands of Palestine refugees who lost their homes and livelihoods due to the 1948 conflict continue to be displaced and in need of support, nearly 75 years on. UNRWA helps Palestine Refugees achieve their full potential in human development through quality services it provides in education, health care, relief and social services, protection, camp infrastructure and improvement, microfinance, and emergency assistance. UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions.

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