The Palestinian Association for Human Rights
(Witness) releases a human rights statement that monitors the administrative
depravity that is practiced by the UNRWA agency while carrying out its
humanitarian work in the health, education, and service
sectors, without a censorship that can cease it, disregarding the economic and
social challenges suffered by the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon.
(Witness) follows up condemning the
systematic curtailment policies that the UNRWA administration in Lebanon has
been following in its various service sectors, especially in the education,
health and relief ones, which can be described as a confused and irrational
In the education sector:
the education sector, because of what is so-called precautionary measures,
UNRWA decided to:
Reduce learning days for students in its schools to merely ten days per
month without distant learning platforms, for the purpose of minimizing the
number of teachers although the Ministry of Education has settled the number of
learning days to be 16 per month.
Refuse to increase the number of staff supervising hygiene and toilets
inside schools who monitor cleanliness and constant sterilization.
Not provide a substitute for teachers who are infected with the Corona
virus, because UNRWA requires to provide a new teacher that school working days
be less than 12 days per month.
Refrain from provision of needs for schools including books and
stationery ,taking an excuse the lack of printing presses in Lebanon.
Terminate the contracts for many clerks, workers, and some teachers of
the study support program.
Cancel the self-learning program and suddenly suspend the contracts of
many daily teachers, knowing that they were contracted with until the end of
the school year.
In the health sector:
UNRWA contracted with many private and governmental hospitals in Lebanon
in 2022 to provide second and third level hospitalization services for
Palestinian refugees. The following matters were monitored:
There is no mechanism to follow up
the implementation of contracts in a clear and transparent manner and to
protect the Palestinian patient from exploitation within those hospitals.
Many patients infected with Corona virus are being exploited and obliged
to purchase medicine on their own expenses that the UNRWA don’t contribute in.
Disregarding the inability of Palestinian refugees to pay the
differences in hospital bills in US dollars according to the exchange rate on
the black market and the rise in medicine prices due to the great economic and
financial crisis that is afflicting Lebanon.
In the field of relief:
In early 2022, UNRWA decided to reduce relief aid and emergency shelter
allowance for Palestinian refugees from Syria from 100$ per month to 25$.
Reducing food and clothing allowances, without taking into account the
difficult economic and financial conditions in Lebanon, the rise in house
rents, as well as in the prices of food commodities and services.
We, in the Palestinian Association for Human Rights
(Witness), call the UNRWA for the following:
Creating a local oversight
mechanism through civil society institutions that monitors the performance of
Working to increase the
precautionary measures for Corona virus in its schools and allocate substitutes
for infected teachers.
Reversal of the decision to
suspend the contracts with many teachers and clerks and return them to their
Reversal of the decision to
reduce relief services for Palestinian refugees from Syria.
Follow up the implementation
of hospitalization contracts with hospitals and protect Palestinian patients
Palestinian Association for Human
Beirut in 17/1/2022