Statement by Germany, delivered by Ambassador Zahneisen, in the Ad Hoc Committee of the General Assembly for the announcement of voluntary contributions to UNRWA, June 23rd, 2022

23.06.2022 - Speech

I am very grateful to the President of the General Assembly for convening today’s Ad Hoc Committee of the General Assembly for the announcement of voluntary contributions to UNRWA.

We hope it will provide the Agency with the necessary financial predictability for its important work.

UNRWA has been an anchor of stability in a very volatile region. We are deeply worried by the impact on Palestine refugees and on UNRWA’s operations resulting from the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine. The rapid increase in needs and the exorbitant rise of food prices can be felt globally, but especially by those who are already in dire need of humanitarian assistance.

Rising food insecurity is also a focus of the German G7 Presidency. We will reach out to the most affected countries from the Global South at a conference entitled “Uniting for Global Food Security” in Berlin tomorrow, which brings together major food exporting countries, countries affected by the crisis as well as international organizations and civil society, while taking stock of ongoing measures and future efforts to tackle the food security crisis.

It is against this background that I am glad to pledge today 113 million Euros on behalf of the German Federal Government for UNRWA. Thereof, more than 85 million Euros are funds for the year 2022. We thereby uphold our already high funding levels of the previous years for UNRWA. From 2018 to 2020 Germany was the largest bilateral donor to UNRWA.

Please allow me to seize the opportunity to thank UNRWA’s leadership and staff as well as host countries for their invaluable support to Palestine refugees in these challenging times.

Germany, in line with the EU supports the idea of looking for synergies and complementarities with other actors – including through partnerships with other UN agencies – with a clear aim to better serve Palestine refugees in the future. This should in no way alter or change the status of Palestine refugees as per international law and UN resolutions, nor should they impact the rights of Palestine refugees.

We think it it is crucial to find innovative ideas to address the growing needs of Palestine refugees and the recurring funding deficit, while strengthening service delivery.

Germany will continue to be a key partner across the entire spectrum of UNRWA’s activities, and this includes financial contributions. We think that a sustainable future of UNRWA is a collective duty of the entire body here, and this includes contributions from the region. We must all share the responsibility for UNWRA so that UNRWA is able to remain an anchor of stability.

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