Israel's Wall in the Occupied Palestinian West Bank forces thousands of Palestinians out of their homes - report

NGOs Affirm Palestinian Refugee Right of Return at UNHCR Annual Meeting

For Immediate Release

No. (E/21/06) 11 October 2006



NGO statement reaffirm the right to return, restitution and compensation of Palestinian refugees and internally displaced as the preferred solution


The NGO Statement on International Protection at the UN High Commissioner for refugees 57th Session of the Executive Committee called "on all actors to redouble their efforts at addressing this gap for Palestinian refugees beginning with their right of return in keeping with UN General Assembly Resolution 194, including the right to restitution and compensation."


Badil joined 70 other member States, UN Agencies and NGO's at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR's) Executive Committee (ExCom) in Geneva from 2 to 6 October 2006. Excom reviews and approves UNHCR's programs and budgets and advises on protection matters with its its intergovernmental and non-governmental partners.


The primary objective of the UNHCR, as an agency, is to strengthen protection of refugees. Protection has been defined as a vital element to "uphold the rights of the most vulnerable, develo[p] safe and sustainable return strategies and thereby preventing repeated situations of displacement, instability and violence."


The NGO Statement on International Protection to Excom recognized that "millions of Palestinians fall into a protection gap, with no access to any form of international protection, including Palestinian refugees in Iraq, who are particularly vulnerable" and called for the implementation of their right to return, restitution and compensation as stipulated in UN Resolution 194.


The NGO Statement on the General Debate also concluded that the 'cluster approach' of the Collaborative Response to situations of internal displacement provides new opportunities to engage on behalf of Palestinian internally displaced persons (IDP). NGOs thus "call upon the international community to explore a protection role in the context of the UN humanitarian reform process to seek protection - particularly the implementation of the right of return, restitution, and compensation - and solutions on behalf of Palestinian IDPs inside Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory."


Source: NGO Statements of UNHCR

For more information contact:

BADIL Resource Center for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights

PO Box 728, Bethlehem, Palestine

Telefax: 00972-2-2747346

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Please read the new Study on Forced Displacement Caused by the Construction of the West Bank Wall and its Associated Regime in the Occupied Palestinian territories