In the wake of war, Palestinians have borne the brunt of dire consequences, grappling with severe challenges in securing basic necessities such as food, shelter, and healthcare. Displaced from their homes and homelands, countless individuals find themselves without shelter, employment, and sustenance. While some are fortunate enough to be granted refugee status and asylum in other countries, the overwhelming numbers paint a stark reality of a crisis that persists.
Amidst these challenges, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) emerged as a lifeline, designed to address the pressing needs of Palestinian refugees. UNRWA plays a pivotal role in ensuring the survival of millions, providing essential resources like food, water, and shelter. Operating in highly affected regions such as Gaza, the West Bank, East Jerusalem, Syria, Jordan, and Lebanon, the agency has been a beacon of hope for over 5.6 million registered Palestinian refugees who depend solely on its support.
Established in 1949, UNRWA has been instrumental in assisting over 8 million Palestinians, offering not only sustenance but also a sense of security. However, recent months have seen the agency plunge into a humanitarian crisis, grappling with diminishing funds that imperil its ability to deliver crucial aid. Controversies surrounding UNRWA as an organisation have taken center stage, but what about the millions of Palestinians who depend on its services? The consequences of such controversies are often overlooked, leaving the vulnerable population in a precarious position.
Should the funding and services of UNRWA cease, the lives of more than 5 million people would be in jeopardy, rendering them homeless and at risk of starvation. At Darzah, we stand in solidarity with the 5.6 million Palestinian refugees whose lives hang in the balance. We call for decisions that prioritise the well-being of the individuals behind the statistics, recognizing the profound impact on the innocent lives that depend on organisations like UNRWA for their basic survival.