chapter  9
22 Pages

Foreign aid strategy


International assistance to the Palestinian people did not begin with the Oslo peace process. The United Nations involvement, for instance, goes back to the early 1950s with the establishment of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), and many donors, such as the European Commission (EC) and USAID, started their support in the years following the 1967 occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip (WBGS). However, it is only over the last decade that aid to the occupied Palestinian territory has become so wide-ranging and substantial: by the beginning of 2002, US$6.5bn had been committed and some US$4.4bn disbursed. At US$195 per person per annum, this represents one of the highest levels of per capita official development assistance in the world, highlighting the political importance assigned to the resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.2