A welcome decision on support for UNRWA but the paltry level of funding is deeply disappointing


PSNA welcomes the government decision to continue funding UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinians) but we are deeply disappointed the funding will remain unchanged from previous years despite the massive increase in need from Israel’s war on Gaza.

UNRWA is by far the most important and effective organisation as delivering aid to Palestinians in Gaza.

On 1 March this year a wide range of aid organisations joined together to say this about UNRWA:

“UNRWA is the largest provider of humanitarian aid in Gaza. The plain reality is that UNRWA’s humanitarian role in this crisis is indispensable – including, but not limited to provision of health and education services, food and water provision, psychosocial support, and solid waste management – and cannot remotely be replaced by any other aid organization”

“Their role in the facilitation and delivery of life-saving humanitarian aid at scale in this crisis has been heroic. UNRWA’s supply of vital shelter, food, and basic services like sanitation, as well as the use of infrastructure by other aid organizations, is irreplaceable

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Why are UNRWA’s heroic efforts and demonstrated effectiveness not been recognised by the New Zealand Government at a time when aid is so desperately needed?

The government providing $17 million to other aid groups for Gaza just doesn’t cut the mustard. These other organisations do good work but don’t have the infrastructure, the personnel or the reach to meet the needs of Palestinians on the scale or effectiveness which UNRWA has demonstrated year after year.

It seems clear the government has succumbed to pressure from the pro-Israel lobby which for years has sought to demonise and undermine UNRWA. Their campaign aims to undermine Palestinians’ status as refugees and remove their right to return to their land and homes in Palestine from which they are being progressively ethnically cleansed by Israel.

Part of this pro-Israel campaign involved the blatant lie that UNRWA staff were involved in the October 7th attack on Israel. Israel released its bogus claims within hours of the International Court of Justice finding a credible claim of genocide existed against Israel. It was a desperate, but successful, ploy with western media falling over themselves to print the phony information and downplay the ICJ ruling just as Israel intended. The Israeli claims were fact-free.

With the level of desperate need in Gaza we have urged the government to at least double and bring forward its contribution to UNRWA. The government is looking the other way.

The cost of pandering to the pro-Israel lobby is $17 million in poorly spent aid funding.


  1. Winston Peters, like Christopher Luxon, has been constantly spreading propaganda on behalf of the genocidal zionists. He even did so in his statement saying that the funding freeze that was arbitrarily imposed on the basis of ACKNOWLEDGED zionist lies was being called off. He has done material damage to the human population of Palestine with his disgusting lies against Palestinians and their human rights defenders who defend them from zionist murders and rapists. He should be paying every dime of his ill-gotten gains to UNRWA for his crimes.

  2. https://archive.is/HRm4x
    ‘When Ariel Sharon​ withdrew more than eight thousand Jewish settlers from the Gaza Strip in 2005, his principal aim was to consolidate Israel’s colonisation of the West Bank, where the settler population immediately began to increase. But ‘disengagement’ had another purpose: to enable Israel’s air force to bomb Gaza at will, something they could not do when Israeli settlers lived there. The Palestinians of the West Bank have been, it seems, gruesomely lucky. They are encircled by settlers determined to steal their lands – and not at all hesitant about inflicting violence in the process – but the Jewish presence in their territory has spared them the mass bombardment and devastation to which Israel subjects the people of Gaza every few years. The Israeli government refers to these episodes of collective punishment as ‘mowing the lawn’.’

  3. Everything you say is granite truth to me. And tears of blood at this swinery amid ‘our’ holocaust. Uncertain times like the 30s before the 50 million deaths of WW ll restored virtue as first. I don’t think we’ll get a second chance to restore the world.

  4. Why didn’t we just give the money to hamas, and cut out the middleman? I’m sure would actually welcome that.

    Strange how quiet he was when Assad killed 160,000 muslims, or the ongoing ethnic cleanser of Christians in Nigeria?


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