Monday, 17 May 2021 04:58 GMT

Jordan- A moral obligation

(MENAFN - Jordan Times) Even though the plight of the Palestinian refugees gets at times forgotten amidst the growing refugee crisis worldwide, they cannot forget their predicament, and neither should the international community whose complicity or inaction gave rise to their dispossession.

It is the West that robbed them of their land and made them flee their ancestral homeland, seeking refuge in neighbouring Arab countries, notably Jordan.

But if the West tends to forget, one organisation, at least, is there to remind it of its obligation towards these refugees: the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA).

Very recently, its head, Commissioner General Pierre Krahenbuhl, urged donors and stakeholders to 'keep on supporting UNRWA in completing its mission'.

Talking during a press briefing held on the sidelines of the agency's Advisory Commission's meeting at the Dead Sea, Krahenbuhl said that the agency is still lacking $77 million to complete the activities it planned for this year, a sum 'vital to continue improving the situation of the Palestinian refugees'.

UNRWA's mandate was extended last year for three more years, a step in favour of which voted 167 countries. The vote represented a 'strong political message that these countries delivered', but while the extension should be reassuring to the refugees, their lot cannot be improved unless aid is forthcoming.

Krahenbuhl, therefore, wished to 'remind everyone that the refugees shall not be forgotten, and it is our responsibility to stand together to ensure their well-being'.

As important as UNRWA's help is, the Palestinian refugees want and expect more from the international community.

They still yearn for their homeland, usurped by Israel. They still need their suffering to be acknowledged and their rights restored.

Above all, they desire to live in peace, free and in dignity in their own country.

Until that happens, they will have to resort to outside help — of which Jordan gave generously.

But UNRWA and Jordan, where 2 million registered refugees live, cannot alone provide all the needed services. Donor nations need to do their fair share until a solution is reached and Palestinians, like every other nation under the sun, will have a country.


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