The number of Palestinian refugees at risk in Gaza is on the rise

A Palestinian woman sits outside of her house in the Khan Younis refugee camp in southern Gaza. A Palestinian woman sits outside of her house in the Khan Younis refugee camp in southern Gaza. Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters

14 January 2019

As violence against Palestinians becomes increasingly prevalent in Gaza, so do the risks of the growing number of refugees in the region.

The number of Palestinian refugees in Gaza  has dramatically increased in the last 20 years. The Commissioner for United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine (UNWRA), General Pierre Krähenbüh, explained: That is a figure the world should be shocked about, because in the year 2000, we used to provide food assistance to 80,000. So, we’ve moved from 80,000 people on our food assistance list to one million. Why? Because the whole dynamic of the conflict and the blockade has wiped out entire sectors of the Gaza economy.” As satisfying the basic needs of the increasing number of refugees has increased, so has the violence in the region.

The term “Palestine refugees” originally referred to both Arabs and Jews residing on the territory of Mandatory Palestine but were later displaced as a result of the 1948 Palestine war. The definition has since expanded to include descendants of the original refugees who still experience the loss of livelihood as a result of the conflict. As the number of refugees has dramatically increased, so has the number of violent incidents. At the end of January, a 38-year-old Palestinian father was shot and killed in the West Bank. During this incident, a group of 30 Israelis from an nearby outpost attacked Palestinian farmers in their fields and later descended into the village where they shot at the villagers and their houses. It has been reported that six villagers were shot dead while three were left in serious condition.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs has released information stating that the average number of violent incidents instigated by settlers per month increased by 57% in 2018 compared to 2017, and by 175% in comparison to 2016. Correspondingly, the UNWRA has appealed for $1.2 billion to aid the growing number of refugees in Gaza and the West Bank in order to assist the refugees located the region.

 

To read more, visit:

https://news.un.org/en/story/2019/01/1031562

https://www.albawaba.com/news/un-disturbed-palestinian-kill-armed-israeli-settlers-west-bank-extremely-violent-attack-1245898

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