Norway Maintains Support for Palestinian Refugees Amid Funding Crisis

Norway reaffirmed its commitment to supporting Palestinian refugees by allocating 275 million crowns ($26 million) to the UN Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA) this year, with the possibility of further increases if necessary. This decision follows funding suspensions from several countries, including the United States, Germany, and Britain, triggered by allegations from Israel accusing some UNRWA staff of involvement in attacks by Hamas.

Despite these challenges, Norway, a significant donor to UNRWA, continues its financial support. UNRWA recently warned of a potential cessation of all operations in the Middle East, including Gaza, by the end of February if funding remains suspended.

Norway’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed the transfer of 275 million crowns to UNRWA, covering its regular annual contribution. Additionally, Norway expressed readiness for further financial assistance throughout the year, especially considering the humanitarian crisis in Gaza.

Last year, Norway contributed 470.5 million crowns to UNRWA, including additional funding following the escalation of conflict in October. Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide emphasized UNRWA’s critical role in providing essential aid to Gaza, where people face daily threats to their lives and safety.

Norway continues to provide humanitarian aid to Gaza as UNRWA faces crises (Credits: Asharq Al Awsat)

Norway urged countries that paused funding to consider the broader impact on Gaza’s population, emphasizing UNRWA’s pivotal role as the primary humanitarian organization supporting Palestinians.

Despite funding uncertainties and challenges, Norway’s commitment to aiding Palestinian refugees remains steadfast, underscoring the importance of sustaining humanitarian assistance to vulnerable populations in the region.