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UN launches $571M funding appeal to address humanitarian needs in Palestine

By Sara Cuña - February 10, 2016
Section: [Main News]
Tags: [UN]

The Minister of Finance and Planning for the State of Palestine, Shukry Bishara, and the UN Coordinator for Humanitarian Aid and Development Activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, Robert Piper launched in a joint press release today the Humanitarian Response Plan for 2016.


The Humanitarian Response Plan for 2016 aims to back the humanitarian needs of 1.6 million Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian territory who are considered to be food insecure, displaced of their homes or in imminent risk of being so.


The 2014 Gaza War, a recent wave of violence in the occupied West Bank, humanitarian needs access restrictions and continuous demolitions in Area C are cited in the press release as contributors to the vulnerability of these Palestinians.


“Forty-eight years of occupation of the Palestinian territory by the State of Israel has left many Palestinians highly vulnerable,” Robert Piper said in the press release. “After such a prolonged period of stress, and many cycles of shock - particularly for the residents of Gaza - the coping capacity of many Palestinians households is at the point of exhaustion,” he added.


The 2016 Humanitarian Response Plan requests US$571 million to implement 206 projects that will be carried out by 79 different organizations. The funding is being sought to enhance food security and shelter for vulnerable Palestinians


“Overall, 1.6 million people are moderately to severely food insecure,” the press release read.


Furthermore, “approximately 92,000 people remain displaced from the 2014 hostilities in Gaza; 8,000 people in the West Bank are at high risk of forcible transfer; recipients of the 11,000 outstanding demolitions orders in Area C need legal assistance to prevent their displacement; and hundreds of thousands of people still have restricted access to essential services.”


This funding request comes in a time of heightened unrest between Israel and Palestinians. Almost 200 Palestinians have been killed since Oct. 2015, which marks the beginning of a wave of violence in the occupied Palestinian territories.


Recent actions taken by Israeli authorities, including house demolitions, land appropriation or settlement expansion, have been criticized by US Secretary of State John Kerry and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon.

“Addressing the root causes of the crisis through political solution is vital to moving forward”, said Piper, “Meanwhile, protecting the rights of Palestinians living under occupation remains the humanitarian community’s main obligation and priority,” he concluded. 


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