GENEVA (Aug. 10)
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) announced today that the Ambassador of Saudi Arabia to the United Nations had informed the UN Secretary, General and the Commissioner-General of UNRWA of his government’s decision to make a special contribution of $2 million to the agency’s programs in 1977.
This pledge is in addition to Saudi Arabia’s regular contribution of $1.2 million for this year. Saudi Arabian contributions to UNRWA since 1950 total over $31 million. Both the special and the regular contributions are allocated to UNRWA’s regular expenditure in 1977, presently budgeted at $134 million.
UNRWA still faces the prospect of a deficit on this budget of $13.8 million. In addition, the extraordinary one-time cost of housing the Palestine refugees displaced by the conflict in Lebanon is estimated at $12 million, to which UNRWA itself is unable to allocate funds until the deficit on the regular budget has been covered. Of the $12 million, a specially earmarked sum of $3.3 million has been pledged.