January 1952 Arab Refugees


January 1952 Arab Refugees

In 1952, the United Nations decided to make an attempt to put through a number of large projects which could create a means of livelihood for substantial numbers of refugees.

In January 1952, it established a three year $200 million reintegration fund, coupled with $50 million for relief.  Thereby it hoped to reduce the relief rolls and increase the numbers of those who could fend for themselves.

This resolution made the usual reference to the fact that the proposal was without prejudice to the December 1948 resolution on repatriation.  It said:

“Endorses without prejudice to the provisions of paragraph 11 of resolution 194 (III) of 11 December 1948 or to the provisions of paragraph 4 of resolution 393 (V) of 2 December 1950 relative to reintegration either by repatriation or resettlement, the programme recommended by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for the relief and reintegration of Palestine refugees, which envisages the expenditure of $50 million for relief and $200 million for reintegration over and above such contributions as may be made by local governments, to be carried out over a period of approximately three years starting as of 1 July 1951;

“Recognizing the concern of the United Nations in the problem of the Palestine refuges;

“Urges the governments of the countries in the area to assist, with due regard to their constitutional processes, in the carrying out of this programme and to extend to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, a subsidiary organ established in the General Assembly, their co-operation in the elaboration of specific projects and in the general performance of its functions.

“Invites the United Nations Relief and Works Agency to explore with the governments concerned arrangements looking toward their assuming administration of reintegration projects at the earliest possible date;

“Requests the United Nations Relief and Works Agency to explore with the governments concerned the desirability and practicability of transferring the administration of relief to those governments at the earliest possible date, and considers that the United Nations Relief and Works Agency should continue to carry the cost of assistance for the health, welfare and education programme along with the duty of making such inspection and such verification of accounts as may be necessary.

“Considers that relief expenditures should be reduced in suitable proportion to reintegration expenditures;”

Three projects, involving a $111 million expenditure, were proposed by UNRWA.  If carried out they would have improved living conditions for about tone third of the refugee population.  They have not been carried out.

Source: 73, pp. 247-248.

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