Oct 05 2017
During a visit to Gaza Strip, Turkish Deputy Foreign Minister Ahmet Yildiz said that Palestinian refugees “face unimaginable hardships,” an UNRWA statement has said.
“I am saddened by what I have seen during my visit to the occupied Palestinian territory,” Yildiz said. “Palestine refugees face unimaginable hardships that are wholly unjust and unacceptable.”
“I am also heartened to see that in spite of the circumstances, UNRWA manages to create opportunities for Palestine refugees, to safeguard their access to basic healthcare and education, and to promote their right to dignity.”
The Turkish ambassador added: “We have to be clear at this point. The Palestine refugee crisis can only be solved through a long-lasting and sustainable solution.”
“In our understanding, this can be only achieved with a two-state solution. Negotiations for a solution should lead to a contiguous, sovereign and independent Palestinian state along 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as her capital.”
During his visit to Gaza, the Turkish official met with refugee officials, as well as the Commissioner-General of UNRWA Pierre Krähenbühl, who expressed his deep appreciation for Turkey’s increasing support for Palestine refugees and the agency itself.
“Turkey, as one of the agency’s longest-standing partners, has long shown deep solidarity and commitment to the issue of Palestine refugees,” Krähenbühl said.
“I thank the deputy foreign minister and his delegation for their visit, which gave them the opportunity to get better acquainted with the services UNRWA provides to Palestine refugees,” he added.
He stated his gratitude for Turkey’s exceptional support to UNRWA this year, noting it has been vital in raising the issue of Palestine refugees and UNRWA’s funding to the highest levels at the United Nations, endeavouring to achieve financial sustainability for the agency.
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