Ramallah: Reaffirming its firm
support to the Palestinian cause, India has donated USD one
million to UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) to provide daily
supplement of food to thousands of Palestinian children in
camps in Gaza Strip.
Minister of State for External Affairs and Human
Resources Development E Ahamed handed over a cheque of USD one
million to UNRWA Commissioner-General Filippo Grandi here last
Ahamed told Grandi that the cheque is India`s annual
contribution for the year 2011-12 to be utilised for
"providing daily supplement of food assistance to more than
76,000 students attending UNRWA schools in Gaza for 50 school
days under the agency`s Emergency Programme in Gaza strip".
The Indian minister assured the UNRWA official of New
Delhi`s continued support in its operations and in its efforts
to alleviate the sufferings of Palestinian refugees.
UNRWA is the main provider of basic services, education,
health, relief and social services, to five million registered
Palestinian refugees in the Middle East.
India has been contributing annually to the UN welfare
agency`s budget and since 2009-10 enhanced its annual
contribution to USD one million.
It also made a special contribution of USD one million in
response to a flash appeal by UNRWA in 2010 to keep its
operations alive in the aftermath of massive destruction
following the Gaza war.
Ahamed, who is here on a two-day visit to the Palestinian
territories, will also participate in the inauguration of the
India-Brazil-South Africa Multipurpose Sports Centre that was
constructed in Ramallah with the funding of IBSA Forum.
The IBSA Sports Centre is the first project completed by
IBSA funding to be donated as a gift from people of IBSA
countries to the people of Palestine. This also happens to be
the first IBSA project in the entire Middle East.
The grouping is also supporting the rehabilitation of the
"Al Quds Hospital" in Gaza and the construction of a "Centre
for People with Special Needs" in Nablus in the West Bank.
The Indian Minister is also scheduled to meet Palestinian
Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Foreign Minister Riyad
Malki later on Saturday.
On his arrival, he offered Friday Prayers at Al-Aqsa
Mosque in Jerusalem and met Sheikh Abdul Azeem Salhab,
President of Islamic Endowment Council.