Caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati stressed that “support for UNRWA is crucial,” warning of “the unpredictable repercussions of halting its funding.” He urged “the international community to continue its assistance to the UN agency to maintain stability in the country.”

Mikati’s remarks came at the end of a consultative meeting held on Wednesday at the Grand Serail with ambassadors from donor countries to explain Lebanon’s position on the importance of continuing to fund UNRWA. The meeting was attended by the UN Coordinator for Humanitarian Affairs, Imran Raza, UNRWA’s Director in Lebanon, Dorothee Klaus, and Lebanese Palestinian Dialogue Committee Chairman Bassel al-Hassan.

“The government is seeking support to implement the national strategy on the Palestinian dossier through the Lebanese Palestinian Dialogue Committee,” the Prime Minister said. He stressed the need for “increased cooperation and coordination between the parties concerned,” adding, “The success of this strategy is essential to regional stability.”

Klaus thanked the Norwegian State for having increased its funding to UNRWA through the release, last week, of 50 million euros to the UN agency. “This gives us hope that certain donors will work in this direction by unfreezing more sums in certain accounts,” she added.

In January, Israel demanded the suspension of UNRWA funding, accusing 12 of its employees of involvement in the October 7 Hamas attack on its territory.

Najib Mikati also received a delegation from the National Moderation bloc.

In response to a question at the end of his visit, Walid Baarini, MP and member of the bloc, assured that “the initiative (of the bloc to unblock the presidential elections) is ongoing.” He stressed the need for “close cooperation between all local and international representatives to achieve the election of a president.”

The caretaker PM also received the Commander-in-Chief of UNIFIL, General Aroldo Lázaro. They discussed the situation in the South and the importance of cooperation between the army and the interim force. Lázaro informed the Prime Minister of the contents of the UN Security Council’s periodic report on the implementation of Resolution 1701.

The head of the caretaker government also met with Farid Belhaj, World Bank Vice President for the Middle East and North Africa, and Jean-Christophe Carré, World Bank Country Director for the Middle East Department.

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