Palestinian workers carry sacks of flour at a UN food distribution center in Al-Shati refugee camp in Gaza City, Jan. 15, 2018. The United Nations on Monday expressed concern over press reports that the U.S. government may significantly cut financial aid to a UN agency for Palestinian refugees. (Xinhua/Wissam Nassar)
UNITED NATIONS, Jan. 15 (Xinhua) -- The United Nations on Monday expressed concern over press reports that the U.S. government may significantly cut financial aid to a UN agency for Palestinian refugees.
It is important to understand that the UN agency for Palestinian refugees was mandated by the UN General Assembly to support humanitarian and human development work for Palestinian refugees, and that it serves some of the most marginalized population in the Middle East, UN chief spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters.
"Its presence through its activities and through health, education and humanitarian (work) is a force for stabilization in a very volatile area."
UNRWA's work is critical. If any donor significantly cuts its contributions, the United Nations will have to find alternative sources of funding, said Dujarric.
It is reported that U.S. President Donald Trump is planning to withhold tens of millions of U.S. dollars for UNRWA, which was created in 1949 as a relief and human development agency for Palestinian refugees and their descendants. It currently helps about five million Palestinian refugees in the Middle East.