Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) Tuesday to work together and provide diverse forms of humanitarian support for Palestinian refugees.
The MoU was signed by QRCS secretary-general Ali bin Hassan al-Hammadi and UNRWA commissioner-general Philippe Lazzarini at a ceremony, attended by UNRWA’s Donor Relations chief Marc Lassouaoui, and UNRWA spokesperson Tamara al-Rifai.
Other QRCS officials, including Relief and International Development Division director Faisal Mohamed al-Emadi, Volunteering and Local Development Division director Muna Fadel al-Sulaiti, Resource Mobilisation Department director Yousef Mohamed al-Awadi, and International Relations head Dr Fawzi Oussedik, also attended the event.
“QRCS realises the important mandate undertaken by the UNRWA to meet the needs of the people of Palestine and ease the burdens and difficulties they face. In particular, the Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak has weighed heavily on their lives, health, and incomes,” al-Hammadi said.
“With this in mind, the signing of this MoU is an attempt to support the UNRWA to continue to provide vital services for the Palestinians. We will raise funds from the generous people of Qatar and international donors to launch humanitarian projects and campaigns that will help to alleviate the suffering of our Palestinian sisters and brothers, especially during this winter”, he added.
Lazzarini thanked QRCS for the welcoming reception. He described the MoU as “important to help the UNRWA this fall to support the Palestinians”.
“As you know, it is very difficult nowadays, in a region suffering from economic, financial, and political turmoil. And on top of that, we have Covid-19, which is hitting everyone without any distinction. But when it comes to the impact of Covid-19, the most vulnerable are the harsher hit, and among them we have the Palestinian refugees.
“Today, there is growing despair and distress, and there is also a feeling among the Palestinian refugees that they might be abandoned by the international community. This is the reason why this cooperation is so important today, because we have to redouble our effort to meet the basic needs and rights of the Palestinian refugees.
“It is a race against the clock, because their expectations are growing vis-à-vis the UNRWA. At the same time, as we all know, the UNRWA is going through an unprecedented financial crisis, at a time when most of the countries supporting the UNRWA are also experiencing their own economic recession. Hence, this is the importance of this agreement today,” he said.
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