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Gaza refugees protest against cuts in UNRWA food assistance

March 8, 2021 at 10:11 am

Palestinians take part in a protest against what they say are food aid cuts by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in al-Shati refugee camp in Gaza City on January 25, 2021 [MAHMUD HAMS/AFP via Getty Images]

Hundreds of Palestinian refugees closed the UN Relief and Work Agency (UNRWA)’s food distribution centres in Gaza yesterday to protest against the organisation’s reduction in food assistance, Al-Quds Al-Arabi reported.

The protest was organised by the Joint Popular Committee for Palestine Refugees and began on Saturday. The committee said protests would continue until UNRWA reversed its decision.

According to media reports, hundreds of refugees gathered in front of the UNRWA centres at 7 am across the refugee camps in the Gaza Strip.

The refugees raised placards condemning UNRWA’s policies and holding it responsible for the fate of their families, stressing that the reduction of food pushes them into food insecurity in light of increasing rates of poverty and unemployment.

UNRWA officials have said that food coupons were being reduced in value to allow the organisation to support a further 100,000 families.

UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini has said the organisation is planning to take more strict measures as a result of the $200 million deficit it is facing.

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