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One Billion Dollars of European Aid for the Palestinian People This Year
The European commission stated that the total European aid for Palestinian people since the beginning of the year exceeds $1 billion, pointing out that these funds increase European aid presented over the past year. The commission said in a statement”The European Union through the European commission has granted over half of these funds slightly, while it granted the member states of the European Union the rest of this amount through the signing of the bilateral agreement with the Palestinian side. More than 500 million dollars have been disbursed to sustain and maintain the performance of the Palestinian Authority and to cover other operating costs for the government.” UNHCR explained it has been allocating approximately $250 million of these funds to assist Palestinian refugees across the Relief and Works Agency for refugees (UNRWA).The rest were divided evenly on humanitarian aid and redevelopment projects. UNHCR noted that such assistance, as announced in a meeting with Prime Minister Salam Fayyad and members of the government and representatives of donor governments and international organizations in Ramallah, in this current July 24, through the allocation of $123 million additional American aid. The statement said “In addition to the assistance by different State Members of the European Union,the above mentioned decision to raise the total assistance from the European Union for 2007 to over one billion dollars so far , a higher value of the overall assistance provided in the year 2006.”The statement quoted by Roy Dickinson, Head of Operations in the Office of the European Commission for technical assistance for the West Bank and Gaza Strip, saying “ The crucial steps taken by the government to regulate the status of public funding raised impressions.” He added “More than half of new aid funds have been allocated from the European Union to the Palestinian people since Dr.Fayyad recognized the responsibility of the Ministry of Finance,”But it was clear from the debate that the government is still facing major challenges, and still needs assistance from donor countries.” The European Commission indicated that the EU is the largest source of international support for the Palestinian people, as provided in the year 2005 about $880 million dollars in the form of aid, and rose to about 89 million in the year 2006, while Europe committed to aids reaching the amount of $801 million for the first seven months of the year 2007, equivalent to $250 American dollars per Palestinian. Dickinson said “This new financial allocation from the European Commission and manual interpretation is clear of the unwavering commitment of the European Union towards the Palestinian people, which is also an indication of hope that the European Union will adheres to see Palestinians enjoy peace and prosperity soon”.