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2015 UNHCR subregional operations profile - Middle East

| Overview |

UNHCR 2015 Middle East subregional operations map

Conflict and indiscriminate violence has plagued large areas of the Middle East in 2014, creating unprecedented protection and humanitarian needs for people of concern to UNHCR. The lack of prospect for peace or stability in the region in the near future offers little hope of the situation improving in 2015.

Home to several overlapping crises and humanitarian emergencies, the Middle East is likely to witness further internal and external displacement, with vast numbers of existing refugees and internally displaced people (IDPs) requiring direct humanitarian support.

As the war in the Syrian Arab Republic (Syria) enters its fourth year, a return to widespread violence in Iraq threatens to affect millions, and Yemen's fragile political transition risks sparking renewed internal clashes further affecting the lives of extremely vulnerable IDPs and refugees.

In an increasingly volatile and dangerous environment for both people of concern and local/international humanitarian actors, maintaining its presence and preparedness to assess and reach affected populations will be a major challenge for UNHCR.

While the international community struggles to effectively address multiple crises, and their implications beyond the Middle East, UNHCR's immediate priority will be to maintain the most favourable protection environment for people of concern, through active advocacy and support to the affected national and local entities.

Encouraging conformity with international standards will take into account the generosity already shown by many hosting countries and the growing challenges of ensuring peaceful coexistence between refugees and local populations.

In terms of basic services and essential needs, UNHCR will need to maintain considerable resources for the distribution of emergency relief to millions. While the majority of refugees and IDPs in the region will continue to live in local communities, those camps already in existence or due to be built in 2015 will require significant funding. Meanwhile, supporting people outside camps will need greater monitoring to ensure the most vulnerable are reached, wherever there may be.

UNHCR will maintain overall coordination of the humanitarian community's refugee response and lead in the areas of IDP protection, camp coordination and camp management (CCCM), as well as shelter and non-food item distribution. This inter-agency coordination is essential in order to maintain the ambitious humanitarian strategies made necessary by the scale of the region's challenges and needs.

The organization and its partners, particularly WFP, UNDP and UNICEF, as well as civil society organizations, will pioneer ways to bridge the critical link between the humanitarian refugee response and refugee-hosting countries' need for resilience and stabilization in a context of protracted regional turmoil.

The organization will also build on the important contributions of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates) and encourage their further leadership of and support for resource mobilization and fundraising. Moreover, in an extremely fragile and volatile context where durable solutions for refugees and IDPs are scarce, continued burden sharing through the offer of resettlement and humanitarian admissions will remain a priority for the most vulnerable.

| Response and implementation |

Operations in Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and Yemen, with budgets of USD 25 million and more, are presented in separate country chapters. For other countries in the subregion where UNHCR operates, please see below.

In Israel, UNHCR will work with the Government and civil society actors to address the identified protection needs of asylum-seekers and refugees. Key activities will include: providing advice and assistance to individuals of concern; contributing to community projects; monitoring conditions in detention facilities, including Holot facility; and advocating laws and policies that protect the asylum-seeker community.

The GCC countries are host to millions of migrant workers, many originating from refugee-producing countries. Strict immigration and labour laws result in many overstaying their visas or becoming irregular as a result of changes in their employment or sponsorship. Additionally, hundreds of thousands of migrant workers cross into Saudi Arabia illegally through Yemen.

Since last year, GCC countries have cracked down on irregular migrant workers in a drive to regularize labour and increase employment of nationals. Accordingly, UNHCR will continue its multi-faceted approach to protection, including capacity building, advocating non-refoulement, and finding durable solutions for beneficiaries, in close coordination and partnership with competent GCC actors. Certain populations of concern to UNHCR, such as Syrians and Rohingyas, can be given exceptional treatment, such as access to education and health care.

From its Regional Office in Saudi Arabia (which covers Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates), as well as its offices in Abu Dhabi and Kuwait, the organization will build on recent financial contributions to emergencies from GCC governments, national institutions and private entities, in order to foster greater coordination and participation towards more effective humanitarian delivery.

UNHCR will continue to raise awareness about its mandate, strategies, objectives, appeals and operations, and to promote a culture of transparency and shared responsibility, with the aim of mobilizing sustained resources for its field operations.

| Financial information |

UNHCR's financial requirements for the Middle East have increased dramatically in recent years, from USD 506.4 million in 2011 to a revised 2014 budget of USD 1.6 billion, as a result of needs arising from the crisis in Syria. In 2015, these financial requirements have increased again to USD 1.7 billion due to growing needs chiefly stemming from developments in Iraq, Syria and Yemen.

In light of the evolving situation in the region, any changes in requirements will be presented separately, mainly in the 2015 Regional Refugee and Resilience Plan (3RP) and the 2015 Syria Humanitarian Assistance Response Plan (SHARP) for the Syria situation and in a supplementary appeal for the Iraq situation.

UNHCR 2015 budgets for the Middle East (USD)
Operation 2014
Revised budget
(as of 30 June 2014)
Total 1,563,691,679 1,285,348,911 3,897,994 35,763,788 381,075,716 1,706,086,409
1. As from 2015 Kuwait is reported under Saudi Arabia Regional Office.
Iraq 311,967,182 136,096,621 2,045,988 35,763,788 56,629,011 230,535,408
Israel 2,934,409 3,207,939 0 0 0 3,207,939
Jordan 352,882,579 404,432,393 0 0 0 404,432,393
Kuwait[1] 5,000 - - - - -
Lebanon 471,872,116 555,537,603 1,242,275 0 0 556,779,878
Saudi Arabia Regional Office 4,266,486 4,577,895 320,000 0 0 4,897,895
Syria Regional Refugee Coordination Office 17,425,583 20,537,705 0 0 0 20,537,705
Syrian Arab Republic 320,223,482 52,557,990 179,730 0 309,778,397 362,516,117
United Arab Emirates 3,372,493 2,890,951 110,000 0 0 3,000,951
Yemen 56,726,371 44,869,802 0 0 14,668,309 59,538,111
Regional activities 22,015,977 60,640,011 0 0 0 60,640,011

Source: UNHCR Global Appeal 2015 Update

UNHCR contact information

The UNHCR Liaison Office in Kuwait
Style of Address The UNHCR Liaison Officer in Kuwait
Street Address UN House West Mishref - block 6, West Mishref - block 6, Al Qouse Street - Diplomatic Square, (in front of Australian University), Kuwait City, Kuwait
Mailing Address P.O. Box 28742, Safat, 13148 Kuwait City, Kuwait
Telephone 965 25308000
Facsimile 965 25388354
Email kuwku@unhcr.org
Time Zone GMT + 3
Working Hours
Monday:8:00 - 15:30
Tuesday:8:00 - 15:30
Wednesday:8:00 - 15:30
Thursday:8:00 - 15:30
Sunday:8:00 - 15:30
Public Holidays 03 January 2016, new years day
25 February 2016, national day
28 February 2016, liberation day
06 July 2016, eid al fitr
07 July 2016, eid al fitr
11 September 2016, eid al adha
12 September 2016, eid al adha
13 September 2016, eid al adha
02 October 2016, hijri new year
25 December 2016, christmas



UNHCR contact information

Statistical Snapshot*
* As at June 2015
  1. Country or territory of asylum or residence.
  2. Persons recognized as refugees under the 1951 UN Convention/1967 Protocol, the 1969 OAU Convention, in accordance with the UNHCR Statute, persons granted a complementary form of protection and those granted temporary protection. It also includes persons in a refugee-like situation for whom refugee status has, for practical or other reasons, not been ascertained. In the absence of Government figures, UNHCR has estimated the refugee population in many industrialized countries based on 10 years of individual asylum-seeker recognition.
  3. Persons whose applications for asylum or refugee status are pending as at 30 June 2015 at any stage in the asylum procedure.
  4. Refugees who have returned to their place of origin during the first half of 2015. Source: country of origin and asylum.
  5. Persons who are displaced within their country and to whom UNHCR extends protection and assistance. It also includes people in IDP-like situations. This category is descriptive in nature and includes groups of persons who are inside their country of nationality or habitual residence and who face protection risks similar to those of IDPs but who, for practical or other reasons, could not be reported as such.
  6. IDPs protected/assisted by UNHCR who have returned to their place of origin during the first half of 2015.
  7. Refers to persons who are not considered as nationals by any State under the operation of its law. This category refers to persons who fall under the agency's statelessness mandate because they are stateless according to this international definition, but data from some countries may also include persons with undetermined nationality.
  8. Refers to individuals who do not necessarily fall directly into any of the other groups but to whom UNHCR may extend its protection and/or assistance services. These activities might be based on humanitarian or other special grounds.
The data are generally provided by Governments, based on their own definitions and methods of data collection.
A dash (-) indicates that the value is zero, not available or not applicable.

Source: UNHCR/Governments.
Compiled by: UNHCR, FICSS.
Residing in Kuwait [1]
Refugees [2] 593
Asylum Seekers [3] 1,040
Returned Refugees [4] 0
Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) [5] 0
Returned IDPs [6] 0
Stateless Persons [7] 93,000
Various [8] 0
Total Population of Concern 94,633
Originating from Kuwait [1]
Refugees [2] 978
Asylum Seekers [3] 248
Returned Refugees [4] 0
Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) [5] 0
Returned IDPs [6] 0
Various [8] 0
Total Population of Concern 1,226
Government Contributions to UNHCR
2013 Contributions Breakdown
Total contribution in USD: 112,356,762 [rank: 7]
Total contribution in currency: 112,356,762 (USD)
Donor ranking per GDP: 1
Donor ranking per capita: 1
2013 Contributions chart
Contributions since 2000
More info104,356,762
As at 15 January 2015
More info112,356,762
Total contribution in USD: 112,356,762 [rank: 7]
Total contribution in currency: 112,356,762 (USD)
Donor ranking per GDP: 1
Donor ranking per capita: 1
More info 3,606,762
Total contribution in USD: 3,606,762 [rank: 24]
Unrestricted contribution (USD): 2,000,000 [rank: 17]
Donor ranking per GDP: 19
Donor ranking per capita: 18
More info 1,000,000
Total contribution in USD: 1,000,000 [rank: 27]
Total contribution in currency: 1,000,000 USD
Donor ranking per GDP: 26
Donor ranking per capita: 23
More info 1,052,265
Total contribution in USD: 1,052,265 (rank: 29)
Total contribution in currency: 15,000 KWD; 1,000,000 USD
Donor ranking per GDP: 25
Donor ranking per capita: 24
More info 1,000,000
Total contribution in USD: 1,000,000 (rank: 31)
Unrestricted contribution (USD): 1,000,000 (rank: 20)
Donor ranking per GDP: 30
Donor ranking per capita: 24
More info 2,000,000
Total contribution in USD: 2,000,000 (rank: 26)
Unrestricted contribution (USD): 1,000,000 (rank: 20)
Donor ranking per GDP: 21
Donor ranking per capita: 20
More info 700,000
Total contribution in USD: 700,000 (rank: 30)
Unrestricted contribution (USD): 200,000 (rank: 25)
Donor ranking per GDP: 31
Donor ranking per capita: 25
More info 700,000
Total contribution in USD: 700,000 (rank: 44)
Unrestricted contribution (USD): 200,000 (rank: 30)
Donor ranking per GDP: 21
Donor ranking per capita: 21
More info 200,000
USD 200,000 of which 100% was unrestricted.
2004 198,154
More info 2,006,308
USD 2,006,308 of which 100% was earmarked at the subregional level.
More info 844,061
USD 844,061, of which 394,061 unrestricted (47%), USD 450,000 earmarked at sub-regional level (53%).
More info 246,445
USD 246,445 of which 100% earmarked.
More info 251,869
USD 251,869 of which 100% unrestricted.

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