SINGAPORE: The Republic will contribute US$100,000 (S$127,300) to UNICEF’s Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Cluster fund to provide clean water and sanitation in Gaza, Senior Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and Home Affairs Masagos Zulkifli said on Sunday (Oct 12).

Speaking at the Cairo International Conference on Palestine and Reconstructing Gaza, Mr Masagos said the latest donation is in addition to Singapore’s previous contribution in July of US$100,000 to the Singapore Red Cross for humanitarian relief efforts in Gaza. Many Singaporeans have contributed to fund-raising efforts and, as of Sep 30, about S$1.7 million has been raised for relief efforts in Gaza, he said.

Mr Masagos also reiterated Singapore’s commitment to support the Palestinian National Authority’s capacity-building efforts through an enhanced technical assistance package – worth S$5 million over five years – that was announced in 2013. This comprises customised study visits to Singapore, priority places in Singapore Cooperation Programme training courses and postgraduate scholarships.

Singapore is “deeply saddened” by the high number of civilian casualties in the Gaza conflict, Mr Masagos said, and urged “all parties to work seriously towards an agreement over Gaza that will best serve the long-term interests of both the Palestinians and the Israelis”.

He also called for the urgent resumption of negotiations towards realising an eventual two-state solution. “Singapore believes that this is the only way to achieve a lasting and durable peace between the Palestinian and Israeli people,” he said.

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