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United States Gives $72 Million to U.N. Refugee Agency

U.S. aid to U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees tops $230 million in 2005

Posted: May 4, 2005

The U.S. Department of State announced a $72.5 million contribution to the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) May 3.

A statement from spokesman Richard Boucher’s office said this latest donation to UNHCR will push the U.S. total to the agency for 2005 to more than $230 million.

The largest single share of the latest U.S. contribution – almost $46 million – will target problems in Africa, where almost 4.3 million people are considered refugees, internally displaced persons or persons of concern.

UNHCR was established in 1950 by the U.N. General Assembly to lead and coordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee problems worldwide. The primary purpose of the Geneva-based agency is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees.

Boucher said the United States is the world’s largest single donor to UNHCR.

The text of the Boucher statement follows:

(begin text)

[Washington, D.C.]
Office of the Spokesman
May 3, 2005


U.S. contributes additional $72.5 million to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

The United States is pleased to announce an additional contribution of $72.5 million to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees for its 2005 Annual Programs, bringing the U.S. contribution to UNHCR for fiscal year 2005 to over $231 million.

This funding will allow the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to aid approximately 17 million people. This contribution will provide assistance as follows:

  • Africa

$45.8 million

  • Central Asia/Southwest Asia/ North Africa/Middle East

$12.8 million

  • Europe

$7.5 million

  • Asia and Pacific

$3.2 million

  • Western Hemisphere

$2.4 million

  • Global Operations

$0.75 million

The United States believes that the protection and care of refugees and the pursuit of durable solutions for them are shared international responsibilities. The United States is the single largest donor country to the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, doing our part to protect and assist refugees throughout the world. The United States urges other donors to strengthen their efforts in support of the programs of the UNHCR.

(end text)



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