Egypt s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry meets with UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini in Cairo, 7 March 2023. Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Peacefully settling the Palestinian cause will also help the agency overcome the multiple challenges it faces, Egypt’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry told Commissioner-General of UNRWA Philippe Lazzarini in a Cairo meeting on Tuesday.
In this regard, Shoukry stressed Egypt’s support for all efforts to break the stalemate in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
Shoukry affirmed Egypt’s continued support for UNRWA in light of its important role in providing basic and essential services to Palestinian refugees, noting that this helps enhance security and stability in the region.
Egypt also continues to urge the donor states to provide the required funding for UNRWA through the various international frameworks.
For his part, Lazzarini affirmed UNRWA’s keenness to coordinate and consult with Egypt closely and continuously in light of the country’s important role in supporting the UNRWA’s activities and mobilising international support for the agency.
Lazzarini highlighted the big challenges that UNRWA faces currently, which prevent the agency from fulfilling its commitments toward Palestinian refugees and the countries hosting them.
The commissioner-general also said he looks forward to holding a dialogue within the framework of the League of Arab States (LAS) to discuss efforts to enhance UNRWA’s role in light of Egypt’s presidency of the upcoming session of the Council of LAS at the level of foreign ministers.
Lazzarini also met with Arab League Secretary-General Ahmed Abul Gheit on Tuesday, who hailed the agency’s role as a safety valve for stability in the entire region and called for filling the funding gap in UNRWA’s budget, which amounted to $70 million.
Egypt has always affirmed its support for UNRWA, which was established after the 1948 Arab-Israeli war to provide educational, health, and other aid to around 6 million Palestinian refugees in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, the West Bank, and Gaza.