PLO rejects tampering with UNRWA’s mandate

Palestinians gather at the UNRWA building in Gaza City, Gaza (Mustafa Hassona - Anadolu Agency)

Middle East Monitor  /  June 6, 2022

The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) has categorically refused any changes to the United Nations Relief and Works agency for Palestine Refugees’ mandate.

The Higher Committee of the PLO Executive Committee said during a meeting held yesterday that the only body with the power to define UNRWA’s mandate is the United Nations General Assembly through the vote of Member States.

Discussing UNRWA’s financial situation in light of the stifling financial deficit and the statements issued by the organization’s Commissioner-General, Philippe Lazzarini, on strengthening partnerships with international organizations to provide service on behalf of UNRWA, the committee rejected Lazzarini suggestion.

Adding that it is a “transgression and violation” of the powers assigned to him as an executive officer responsible before the General Assembly for UNRWA’s work, as well as an “insult” to UNRWA’s standing, continuity and survival, as a witness to the crime of uprooting an entire people from their homeland and land and their right to return to it.

The committee called on Lazzarini to retract his statement and search for new funding models to mobilize secure sustainable backing that enhances UNRWA’s role to carry out the tasks entrusted to it in accordance with the mandate given to it by Resolution 302.

The PLO also called on the UN to increase its financial contributions to cover UNRWA’s financial deficit.