[An official of UNRWA responded to David Bedein’s lecture to UNCA on November 1st, 2005 in which Bedein stated that UNHCR will not provide services to the descendants of refugees. UNRWA claimed that UNHCR indeed provides services descendants of Refugees… The response received below refutes that claim by UNRWA.]

This information was secured from Brenda Goddard, who is with the legal department at UNHCR headquarters in Geneva:

If a refugee situation continues for a long period of time — as for example it has with Afghani refugees for some 20 years — children who are born of those original refugees and are in the same situation have the same status as their parents and are afforded the same assistance by UNHCR that the parents receive. However, if the parents flee as refugees to a country such as the U.S., where the law automatically counts anyone born there as a citizen, and have children in that place, these children, who have the protection of the country where they were born, are not counted by UNHCR as refugees and do not receive assistance even if the parents do.

If a durable remedy is found for the parents and they have the protection of a state (which does not necessarily mean they are repatriated), UNHCR assistance ends.

If the refugees have fled to a country that is a signatory to the 1951 Geneva Convention on Refugees, it is that country and not UNHCR that has the primary responsibility for the refugees.

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When I left the U.S. in 2001, and came to Israel as an olah (a new immigrant) I was eager to share personal impressions and solid information about the situation here. Thus was my listserve born. This list has grown, and its content and style have been refined. Now I do several postings a week, offering both reliable data and analysis.

Shortly after initiating my listserve, I began to work professionally as an investigative journalist for the Center for Near East Policy Research. Today I serve the Center in a consultant capacity. I work, as well, as a freelance writer.

New Jersey born and bred and a resident of Maryland for several years, I have been living in Jerusalem since shortly after my arrival in Israel.

If there has been a constant in my work over time, it has been my writing, but in many ways my background has been eclectic.

My bachelors degree is in psychology and my masters in counseling and human services.  I took up the cause of the Jews of Ethiopia in the 80s and early 90s, via the American Association for Ethiopian Jews; I worked in the field with people newly arrived in Israel, and assisted with relief and rescue efforts from the States.

I then turned to designing softskills software -- training in the computer on diversity, stress reduction and using your whole brain effectively -- and producing Jewish educational software and hard copy materials.  Simultaneously, I conducted live workshops on stress reduction, Jewish identity and more.

For a period of time, I worked with a top non-governmental anti-terrorist in the US.  This led, fairly directly, to my investigative journalism.

My articles have appeared in such venues as Azure MagazineThe Jerusalem Post, FrontPageMagazine.com, American Thinker, Arutz Sheva, YNet, National Review Online, The (Philadelphia) Jewish Exponent,  MidstreamPresent TenseThe New York TimesBaltimore Jewish TimesOutlookAmitThe Evening Bulletin (Philadelphia), and The Aish website.

I have produced several major reports on UNRWA for the Center for Near East Policy Research, as well reports on the true nature of Fatah, the dangers of funding PA security forces, the Israeli NGO Adalah, and more.

I have written three books: Disclosed: Inside the Palestinian Authority and the PLO in 2004, and Falasha No More (for children) andTreacherous Journey: One Man's Escape from Ethiopia, both in 1985.

I have done interviews with BBC online, FrontPageMagazine.com, Voice of America, IBA English News (Israeli TV), and IsraelNationalNewsTV.

I am on the Board of Advisors of EMET, a Washington based organization dedicated to providing policy makers in the US with accurate information.


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