UNRWA is urgently seeking funding to continue services in Lebanon’s Palestinian refugee camps.
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The United States' decision earlier this year to cut tens of millions of dollars of aid money to the U.N. Palestinian refugee agency has left UNRWA a sinking ship, facing what the agency's head Pierre Krahenbuhl described as the "most severe crisis" in UNRWA's history. A number of countries have been providing short-term fixes that are keeping the agency above the waterline, but two months since U.S. President Trump axed on Jan. 16 an earmarked contribution to the agency from $125 million to $65 million and suspended further funding, UNRWA's situation remains uncertain. The U.S. funds UNRWA to the tune of $300 million dollars yearly – a hefty chunk of the agency's total budget of $1.4 billion, according to estimates provided by Cordone.However, UNRWA must find alternative funding if it wants to weather likely cuts of $300 million.Cuts to core UNRWA funding threaten to overshadow the organization's other projects in Lebanon.Almost 11 years since fighting engulfed the Nahr al-Bared camp in May 2007, 2,486 out of 5,000 families registered for return to the camp are still living outside their homes.
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