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Jordan hails UNRWA’s mandate renewal

By JT - Nov 16,2019 - Last updated at Nov 16,2019

AMMAN — Jordan on Saturday praised the UN General Assembly’s decision to renew the UNRWA mandate.

Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi on Saturday took to twitter to share Jordan’s gratitude.

"An overwhelming support for UNRWA at UN. 170 countries voted in favour of renewing mandate, two against and seven abstained at 4th Committee ahead of General Assembly vote. Grateful to all who acted in support of justice and right of refugees to live in dignity,” he tweeted.

On Friday, the General Assembly voted to extend the mandate of the Palestinian refugee agency until 2023, Xinhua news agency reported.

Maintaining UNRWA is maintaining the rights of 5 million Palestinian refugees to a dignified living, the right of half a million students to education and the right of hundreds of thousands to healthcare, Safadi said in an earlier Foreign Ministry statement.

Rallying support for UNRWA, Jordan has repeatedly reiterated that UNRWA is tied to the refugee cause, which is one of the most significant final-status issues, which must be resolved in accordance with international legislative decisions, most notably UNGA Resolution 194 and the Arab Peace initiative to guarantee the refugees’ rights of return and compensation.

The agency provides vital schooling and medical services to some 5 million Palestinians in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, the Gaza Strip and the Israeli-occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem.

In Jordan, over 2.1 million registered Palestinian refugees distributed among 10 camps benefit from the agency’s services and financial aid.

The agency runs 169 schools in the Kingdom — where some 120,000 students are enrolled — as well as a faculty of science and educational arts, 25 primary healthcare centres and other services, according to Agence France-Presse news agency.

In 2018, the US suspended and later cut all funding for UNRWA, causing a financial crisis that threatened to see its schools and hospitals closed.

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