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UNRWA at 70: Responding to crises and building a just future

November 30, 2019 @ 8:30 am - 5:00 pm

The conference is organised by the Palestinian Return Centre (PRC), with the support of the Al Jazeera Centre for Studies and the European Centre for Palestine Studies, University of Exeter.

The conference is taking place the week preceding the 70th anniversary since UNRWA was founded through UN Resolution 302 (December 8, 1949).

This anniversary is an opportunity to reflect on the historical and ongoing relationship between UNRWA and Palestinian refugees and to discuss how this link can be harnessed to respond to the growing threats facing Palestinian refugees in the region.

The conference comes at a crucial time – a period of precarity for Palestinians – where across the region refugees face increasing uncertainties and attacks on their rights.

There will be four panels across the day with academic speakers renowned for their expertise on UNRWA and Palestinian refugees.

The conference will be a gathering of NGOs, charities, academics and activists, who are expected to enrich the discussion.

Confirmed Speakers

Karen Koning Abuzayd

Commissioner of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry for Syria and former UNRWA Commissioner-General

Francesca Albanese

International lawyer and Affiliate Scholar at the Institute for the Study of International Migration (ISIM), Georgetown University

Riccardo Bocco

Professor of Anthropology and Sociology at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva – IHEID

Leila Hilal

International human rights lawyer and former special adviser to UNRWA on durable solutions for Palestinian refugees

Jalal Al Husseini

Associate Researcher, Institut français du Proche-Orient (Ifpo), Amman

Anne Irfan

Lecturer in Forced Migration at the Refugee Studies Centre, University of Oxford

Dr. Mohammed Mukhtar Al Khalil

Director of the Al Jazeera Centre for Studies

Ghada Karmi

Honorary research fellow at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, University of Exeter

Michael Lynk

UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967

Karma Nabulsi

Professor in Politics and International Relations, Oxford University

Ilan Pappé

Professor of History, Director of the European Centre for Palestine Studies, University of Exeter

Sophie Richter-Devroe

Associate Professor in the Women, Society and Development Program at the College of Humanities and Social Science, Hamad Bin Khalifa University

Terry Rempel

Independent Researcher

Michael Schoiswhol

Acting Director and Principal Legal Officer at UNRWA HQ Department for Legal Affairs

More speakers and full programme to be announced in November.

Light lunch and refreshments will be provided.

Venue will have wheelchair access.


Where is the event taking place and when it will be announced?

The event will take place in central London and registered participants will receive an email the week preceding the conference with the exact venue details

How can I contact the organiser with any questions?

You can email us at [email protected]

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?

You are required to either show printed ticket or a confirmation email on your phone


The Palestinian Return Centre (PRC), Al Jazeera Studies Centre and Exeter University


King's Cross
London , United Kingdom + Google Map

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