The Growth of UNRWA’s “Other” Wards

The last post “UNRWA Anoints New Palestinian Wards” generated many questions. Does the agency tasked with helping descendants of internally-displaced people from 1948 actually assist non-refugees as well?

The answer is unambiguously yes.

Here is UNRWA’s report from January 1, 2011. It shows a whopping growth in the number of “refugees,” including a growth of 8.9% in the West Bank alone. If that sounds too hard to believe that Arabs suddenly went from an annual population growth of 2-3% to 9%, it’s because it is untrue. UNRWA decided to add lots of other people onto its service rolls.

Here is a chart the following year in January 2012, the first time UNRWA broke out figures for this “other” category.

Table 1. 2012 UNRWA Recipients Totals

2012 Jordan Lebanon Syria West Bank Gaza Total
Refugees        1,979,580        436,154        486,946        727,471        1,167,572        4,797,723
“Others”              67,787           29,644           23,498        147,156              49,947            318,032
Total        2,047,367        465,798        510,444        874,627        1,217,519        5,115,755
other % 3.3% 6.4% 4.6% 16.8% 4.1% 6.2%

The non-refugees who received aid from UNRWA were 6.2% of the total population, and an incredible 16.8% in the West Bank.

The world didn’t seem to care and kept sending money to the agency. So the numbers of “others” kept on skyrocketing.

Here is a chart from January 2019, which shows that the “other” percentage jumped to over 10% of the total population serviced by UNRWA.

Table 2. 2019 UNRWA Recipients Totals

2019 Jordan Lebanon Syria West Bank Gaza Total
Refugees        2,242,579        475,075        560,139        846,465        1,421,282        5,545,540
“Others”            133,902           58,810           83,003        201,525            149,013            626,253
Total        2,376,481        533,885        643,142     1,047,990        1,570,295        6,171,793
other % 5.6% 11.0% 12.9% 19.2% 9.5% 10.1%

As shown in Table 2, one-in-five West Bank recipients of UNRWA aid were not even descendants of people who fled the 1948 war zone.

This is a result of the active recruitment of “other” Arabs who UNRWA decided should get services from the bloated agency.

Table 3. Change from 2012 to 2019
UNRWA Recipients Totals

Change Jordan Lebanon Syria West Bank Gaza Total
Refugees 13.3% 8.9% 15.0% 16.4% 21.7% 15.6%
“Others” 97.5% 98.4% 253.2% 36.9% 198.3% 96.9%

As show in Table 3, while the Gaza “refugee” population grew by 21.7% over seven years, the “others” serviced by UNRWA TRIPLED. Overall, the refugee population grew by 15.6% while the “other” category almost doubled.

Who are these “Other” Non-Refugees?

UNRWA doesn’t hide the fact that in services other people. It considers itself a humanitarian organization, so it will give other people in need free education and healthcare. Why Syrians fleeing the terrible civil war come under the umbrella of UNRWA (growing by 253%!!) and not the UNHCR which cares for every other refugee in the world is a mystery that only the brains at UNRWA could answer.

In general, UNRWA breaks down the “other” category into six categories:

  • Jerusalem poor and Gaza poor. Just being poor – and their descendants! – entitles people to special relief from UNRWA.
  • Frontier Villagers. That’s a category, and all their descendants also get services from UNRWA.
  • Compromise Cases. Alas, these descendant to not get services
  • Family Members. If someone marries a refugee, then they get services and all adopted children get services. Quite the set up for the scam of the century.
  • Non-refugee wives. If you marry a refugee, you get special services.
  • Khafala children. Children who get Islamic care from a refugee or “other” get UNRWA services too, even if they or their ancestors were never refugees.

So many rich categories to choose from, it’s a wonder that the rolls only doubled in seven years and din’t quintuple.

UNRWA office in Jerusalem
(photo: First.One.Through)

UNRWA was created in 1950 as a TEMPORARY agency, but has managed to make itself a permanent fixture in the Arab-Israel conflict as it inflates the number of refugees and continuously adds to its beneficiaries and staffing. It is well past time to whittle it down to size.

Related First.One.Through articles:

What’s Wrong with UNRWA

The Gross OVER-Staffing of UNRWA Schools

UNRWA’s Munchausen Disease

Help Refugees: Shut the UNRWA, Fund the UNHCR

Subscribe YouTube channel: FirstOneThrough

Join Facebook group: FirstOne Through Israel Analysis and FirstOneThrough


13 thoughts on “The Growth of UNRWA’s “Other” Wards

  1. from JNS dot org:

    “Under the Trump administration, the United States
    argued that UNRWA [United Nations Relief and
    Works Agency for Palestine Refugees] has perpetuated,
    rather than helped end, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,
    by extending refugee status to the children, grandchildren
    and great-grandchildren of those who fled Israel during
    the establishment of the Jewish state in 1948.”

    SOURCE: UNRWA Leaders Accused
    of Sexual Misconduct, Ethics Violations


  2. “…UNRWA’s definition of refugee is not
    dependent on need, and even applies to
    citizens of recognized states, such as Jordan.”
    SOURCE: The Media’s Unredeemable ‘Reporting’
    on UNRWA
    by Sean Durns / * 2018/9/22
    “Instead, UNRWA schools and facilities have been
    used to promote hatred and murder of Israelis.
    For example, a March 7, 2016 ceremony at an
    UNRWA school in Gaza City celebrated stabbing Jews.
    UNRWA officials have also posed with maps
    erasing Israel and have been caught
    disseminating anti-Semitic materials.”
    SOURCE: The Media’s Unredeemable ‘Reporting’
    on UNRWA
    by Sean Durns / * 2018/9/22
    “Yet according to a 2011 report by the
    Center for Near East Policy Research,
    UNRWA has four times as many staff members
    as UNHCR does — despite the fact that UNRWA
    deals with six times fewer refugees than UNHCR.
    In fact, instead of working to resettle
    refugees, UNRWA employees have been caught
    working for Hamas and praising Hitler.”
    SOURCE: The Media’s Unredeemable ‘Reporting’
    on UNRWA
    by Sean Durns / * 2018/9/22


  3. “UNRWA employees have been caught praising
    anti-Jewish violence, and, per a 2015 UN
    investigation, [that] the organization’s
    facilities were used by terrorist groups
    to launch and store rockets during the
    2014 Israel-Hamas War.”

    SOURCE: The Media’s Unredeemable ‘Reporting’
    on UNRWA by Sean Durns / * 2018/9/22

    In May 2018, Swiss Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis said:

    “UNRWA has become part of the problem…
    It provides the ammunition to continue the conflict.

    For as long as Palestinians live in refugee camps,
    they want to return to their homeland.”

    SOURCE: Swiss Funding Freeze
    in Wake of UNRWA Corruption Allegations Piles
    on Palestinian Refugee Agency’s Woes
    by Ben Cohen, 2019/7/30

    UN Admits Palestinians Fired Rockets from UNRWA Schools:


  4. From my favorite org Im Tirtzu – Under UNRWA Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib who earns $175,000 a year and whose parents immigrated to USA in 1975 is STILL a refugee.
    ’nuff said


  5. Pingback: UNRWA’s Fake Students, Curriculum and Shortfall | FirstOneThrough

  6. Pingback: UNRWA: Antisemitismus und kein Ende - Audiatur-Online

  7. Pingback: Palestinian Arabs De-Registering from UNRWA | FirstOneThrough

  8. Pingback: Palestinian Arabs De-Registering from UNRWA – Jewish Review

  9. Pingback: Adam Schleifer Shares His Positions on Israel | FirstOneThrough

  10. Pingback: A Tale of Three Palestinian Refugees, With and Without UNRWA | FirstOneThrough

  11. Pingback: The Disgraceful Promotion of Refugee-Washing ‘Nakba’ In The U.S. Congress | FirstOneThrough

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s