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
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
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
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 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.
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