UN report: 2020 is a year of setbacks for the Palestinians

A UN report considered that the past year “was a year of setbacks for the Palestinians, their institutions and their economy, due to the emerging coronavirus pandemic and the unprecedented financial crisis.”

On Friday, the report issued by the Office of the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Settlement Process, Tor Wennesland, affirmed that more than “half of the Palestinians now need humanitarian aid, at a time when Palestinian economic and social development is witnessing its worst years since 1994.”

He warned that “the humanitarian crisis in the Occupied Palestinian Territory will worsen and will have negative effects on Palestinian development paths for many years to come.”

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He explained that nearly 150 thousand Palestinians lost their jobs last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, and this is expected to cause similar negative effects due to the currently imposed closures.

“The Palestinian economy has also contracted by 10 to 12 percent – one of the largest annual downturns since the establishment of the Palestinian Authority in 1994,” he said.

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However, the report indicated that since the beginning of February this year, anti-corona vaccines have begun to reach the occupied Palestinian territories.

He pointed out that the United Nations provides the necessary support to the Palestinian government through the “Kovacs” mechanism, which is a mechanism of the World Health Organization that deals with the fair availability of Covid-19 vaccines all over the world.

The report called on the international community to support a wide range of humanitarian and development projects, in addition to technical support, to help the Palestinian government implement its economic reform pledges, stressing the importance of reintegrating the West Bank and Gaza Strip to face economic challenges and difficulties.

(Source / 20.02.2021)

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