From Japan to UNRWA: Emergency aid to address humanitarian needs in Gaza

By United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East

From Japan to UNRWA: Emergency aid to address humanitarian needs in Gaza

In a reaffirmation of its longstanding commitment to supporting Palestine Refugees, and to UNRWA’s indispensable role in the Gaza Strip, the Government of Japan has donated essential emergency aid, including blankets, water containers, plastic sheets, and sleeping mats, for the Agency’s humanitarian response in Gaza

In a handover event hosted by his country’s Embassy in Cairo, Ambassador Oka Hiroshi said: “Since the outbreak of the current crisis in Gaza last October, UNRWA has consistently been at the forefront of humanitarian assistance activities.”

The event underscored the robust partnership between Japan and UNRWA and highlighted the grave humanitarian crisis caused by the war in Gaza. This crisis has been exacerbated by significant barriers to aid delivery, leading to intensified food and water insecurity, malnutrition, and severe disruptions to health and sanitation services.

Sahar Al-Jobury, Chief of the UNRWA Representative Office in Cairo, expressed profound gratitude for Japan’s support and partnership and deeply regretted the challenges in delivering the aid.

“Rafah Crossing remains closed, and Karem Abu Salem is unsafe to access as it is located near or in combat zones. As a result, the flow of supplies into southern Gaza has been severely restricted. Since 6 May, only 143 aid trucks have made it through,” she said.

Al-Jobury also commended Japan’s resumption of its funding to UNRWA with a recent contribution of US$ 35 million from the government’s supplementary budget for this year.

Also present was Yasuhiko Uekusa, Director of the International Peace Cooperation Headquarters, who traveled from Tokyo specifically for the occasion.

He reiterated Japan’s commitment to alleviating the humanitarian situation in Gaza, saying, “In close cooperation with UNRWA, as well as relevant countries and international organizations, Japan will continue to make utmost efforts to improve the humanitarian conditions in the Gaza Strip.”