UN, Palestinians launch aid appeal after funding cuts

The UN and the Palestinian Authority appealed on Monday for $350m in aid for Palestinians next year, saying much more was needed but they had to be realistic after a year of funding cuts.

The 2019 Humanitarian Response Plan focused on Palestinians most in need of food, healthcare, shelter, water and sanitation, said Jamie McGoldrick, the UN humanitarian co-ordinator in the Gaza Strip, West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Donations were down in many areas around the world, he said. But local aid work took a particularly hard hit this year when the US ended funding for the UN agency that helps 5 million Palestinian refugees.

“Humanitarian actors are faced with record-low funding levels of this year, at the same time we face massive and increasing needs,” McGoldrick said in Ramallah in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

“We will be able to assist fewer people this year, 1.4 million people are being targeted as opposed to 1.9 million last year.”

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