Top UN official in Lebanon calls for more support for Palestine refugee camp during visit

31 March 2015

On a visit to the Palestinian refugee camp of Ein El-Hilweh in south Lebanon today, the United Nations’ top official in the country said the world body would continue working to assist where possible and would seek critical support from donors.

“We hope new support will also be forthcoming at the International Humanitarian Pledging Conference that is taking place today in Kuwait,” said Sigrid Kaag, the UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon.

Ms. Kaag joined the Acting Director of the UN Relief and Works Agency for the Near East (UNRWA), Heli Uusikyla, on the trip, during which they visited an UNRWA-managed health centre and school and a women's centre, and met with camp representatives.

“Camp residents and officials briefed me on the challenges faced due to crowded living conditions, unemployment and poverty,” said Ms. Kaag.

Some 55,500 Palestinian refugees live in Ein El-Hilweh camp, in addition to over 6,000 Palestinian Refugees from Syria. Noting the high demographic density, the Special Coordinator hoped more could be done to ensure efficient shelter rehabilitation inside the camp.

She welcomed the role played by the joint security force in maintaining stability in the camp and urged continued cooperation between Palestinian and Lebanese authorities for the benefit of the Lebanese and Palestinian refugee communities.

Today's visit was the first by the Special Coordinator to Ein El-Hilweh, the largest of the 12 Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon.

 

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