The House of Representatives is expected to soon take up the Obama administration’s annual request for funding of UNRWA, and challenges have risen in Congress to cut or even eliminate US funding for the Agency. American Friends of UNRWA joins other organizations including Churches for Middle East Peace, Arab American Institute, Americans for Peace Now, and the United Nations Association in urging you to act quickly to support continued funding of UNRWA!
For the past 62 years, UNRWA has worked relentlessly to help sustain a capable and healthy Palestinian society. The US is the single largest donor to UNRWA, and without its support, the Agency simply cannot not sustain its crucial work. Any reduction or elimination in funding for UNRWA’s vital programs would be dangerous and destabilizing for both Palestinians and its neighbors, as well as a blow to US credibility and influence in the region at a time of rising unrest.
Please join us today in supporting UNRWA’s work by contacting your representative and urging continued US support for UNRWA funding.
Current upheavals in the Middle East call for even greater U.S. support for peaceful change and human development to maintain stability and protect our national security in the region.
Continued strong U.S. support for UNRWA, which serves 4.7 million Palestinian refugees in the West Bank, Gaza, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria, is more important than ever in these volatile areas where poverty, despair and extremism are a constant threat to peace.
UNRWA operates nearly 700 schools for 500,000 students, helping Palestinians become one of the best educated societies in the region. UNRWA also runs health clinics for over 3,000,000 refugees, as well as women’s and vocational centers and micro-lending programs. These and other services have helped most Palestinian refugees, become more self–sufficient and productive.
Americans can be proud of our country’s steadfast support for UNRWA, as its largest donor, for over six decades. By improving lives for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA’s work has been critical in building a more stable environment for peace between Israelis and Palestinians and elsewhere in the region.
The fact that the United Kingdom is increasing its contribution to UNRWA is a testament to the high quality of its work.
UNRWA’s human development work is a mainstay of U.S. policy in the Middle East. It is a vital counterpart to our diplomacy to bring peace for Israelis and Palestinians. I urge you to support fully the administration’s funding request for UNRWA.