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June 20 2021 6:32 AM ˚

Swedish delegation visits refugee camp near Jerash

Swedish delegation
The Swedish delegation tours the Souf refugee camp near Jerash this week. (Photo: UNRWA)
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AMMAN — A Swedish delegation finished a visit to Souf refugee camp near Jerash on Tuesday. The delegation toured a UNRWA-run school and health center, according to a statement from UNRWA. اضافة اعلان

In addition to touring the school and health facility, the delegation spoke with Palestinian youth, were briefed about UNRWA’s operations to support vulnerable Palestinians, and met with a family to hear about how COVID and living conditions were affecting their lives.

The delegation included Swedish state secretary for international development cooperation, Janine Alm Ericson, the director-general of the Swedish International Development Agency Carin Jämtin, the ambassador of Sweden to Jordan Alexandra Sofia Rydmark, the director general of the Department of Palestinian Affairs, Rafiq Khirfan, and the director of UNRWA affairs in Jordan, Marta Lorenzo.

At the UNRWA Souf Girls School, the delegation heard a briefing about the situation of Palestine refugees in Jordan and across the region, according to the statement. They were also briefed about UNRWA efforts in education, health, relief, and social services as well as cross-cutting priorities and the specific vulnerabilities of ex-Gazans and Palestinians who have fled Syria.

The delegation also met with Palestine refugee youth studying in UNRWA vocational training centers, who shared their experiences and the challenges of learning during the pandemic.

“The difficult situation for the Palestinian people has become even worse during the last year. The pandemic and in some of its fields of operation increasing violence, as well as insufficient funding have made UNRWA’s work more difficult than ever,” Ericson said in the statement. “Later this year, Jordan and Sweden will host an international conference to take important steps towards a sustainable funding of UNRWA. The international community needs to come together to back the rights and dignity of the Palestinian people.”

The visit was concluded with a talks with Palestine refugee families residing in Souf refugee camp, where the delegation listened to them share how the pandemic has affected their living situation.

Marta Lorenzo, director of UNRWA affairs in Jordan said: “Today the support is more needed than ever, as refugees’ numbers and daily requirements are in constant increase. And their lives are getting harder because of COVID-19.”

The statement added that Sweden has provided over $50 million in unearmarked support to the Program Budget and Emergency Appeals and recently pledged an additional $1.2 million to UNRWA.

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