Almost a dozen countries have agreed to advance their annual contributions to the U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees to help it plug a major shortfall after a partial cut-off of U.S. funding, its chief said on Tuesday.
The United States said this month it would withhold $65 million of $125 million it had planned to send to UNRWA, which runs schools and clinics for 5.3 million Palestinians across the Middle East.
Eleven countries have agreed to advance their donations to finance UNRWA programs in coming months. Seven countries – Switzerland, Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Germany and Russia – had already transferred early funds while four – Belgium, Kuwait, the Netherlands and Ireland – have pledged to do so soon.
The agency launched an appeal for some $800 million to provide aid to Palestinian refugees in Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and the Palestinian territories this year.