Palestinians to receive critical EU funding

“Long-term peace can only be achieved with a long-term political solution."

SNP Alyn Smith, Member of the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs committee has welcomed the announcement of new EU funding to the Palestinian Authority, which will provide help to address the humanitarian needs of the Palestinian people and support the re-development projects following the devastation sustained in Gaza.

The first tranche of €212 million is a part of the European Union’s ongoing commitment to support the reconstruction of the vital services such as education and healthcare badly damaged by the recent violence.

Alyn said:

“If the international community has no political will to address the root causes of the conflict in Palestine, then we must provide aid to try to minimise the impact of this entirely man-made tragedy.

“The announcement of the assistance package to the Palestinian Authority and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) is not only welcomed but needed to address critical shortfalls in funding.

“Existing health care facilities are overstretched, and service is frequently interrupted by power cuts. The situation is made even worse by the poor sanitation and water systems unfit for purpose; over 90 per cent of the water in Gaza has been deemed unfit for human consumption.

“The sheer scale of the destruction and the devastating humanitarian impact on a largely refugee population is truly shocking and the pace of reconstruction in Gaza remains slow as the international community at times is failing to provide the people of Palestine with the bare minimum.

“What the Palestinian people need most is a long-term peace which can only be achieved by a long-term solution to this conflict, including an end to the blockade which is depriving the next generation in Gaza of a future.

EU Foreign Policy Chief, Federica Mogherini said:

"An effective Palestinian Authority, committed to non-violence and a peaceful resolution of the conflict, is a key element for the Middle East peace process towards a two-state solution.

“We will continue to support the Palestinian Authority in consolidating and expanding the important results it has achieved with our support in building the institutions and infrastructure of a future Palestinian State."