Saudi Arabia pledges $50 million to UN Palestinian refugee agency

Saudi Arabia pledged $50 million in aid on Wednesday to the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA), which has been hit by the withdrawal of all US funding, an official said.

The announcement was made at a press conference in the Saudi capital by the director of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center, Abdullah al-Rabeea.The agency has slowly bridged the massive budget shortfall left by US funding cuts thanks to contributions from European and Gulf nations.

UNRWA commissioner general Pierre Krahenbuhl told a news conference in Jordan last week that the agency has been able to reduce a $446-million budget deficit at the start of 2018 to $21 million. Krahenbuhl thanked in particular Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Qatar, saying they had helped plug the deficit by contributing $50 million each, and that their combined $200 million makes up “almost half of the total amount that we mobilized this year”.

Source: National News Agency