Middle East

Operational information on the Middle East subregion is presented below. A summary of this can also be downloaded in PDF format. This subregion covers the following countries:

| Bahrain | Iraq | Israel | Jordan |Kuwait | Lebanon | Oman | Qatar | Saudi Arabia| Syrian Arab Republic | United Arab Emirates | Yemen |


Subregion: Middle East


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  • 2014
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  • 2017
  • 2018
  • 2019

Budgets and Expenditure in Subregion Middle East

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2017 {"categories":[2014,2015,2016,2017,2018,2019],"budget":[1767.45606157,1956.138243929,1911.753328647,2030.943688046,2243.50849637,2476.67403911],"expenditure":[1099.48857212,1059.45956475,1212.9320557,1089.34285307,null,null]} {"categories":[2014,2015,2016,2017,2018,2019],"p1":[1071.29315117,1171.649811879,1074.174511887,1079.942153164,1120.2262255,1353.35286785],"p2":[3.83262054,3.89799389,2.28713136,1.61649358,1.31344453,1.6335431],"p3":[39.59885527,35.76378805,26.70785472,146,259.2,259.38285378],"p4":[652.73143459,744.82665011,808.58383068,803.385041302,862.76882634,862.30477438]} {"categories":[2014,2015,2016,2017,2018,2019],"p1":[712.10525101,715.5914882,751.4589796,715.37560334,null,null],"p2":[3.0784008,2.16809421,1.48631248,0.96258046,null,null],"p3":[10.53576239,11.32961956,1.89021959,4.84129756,null,null],"p4":[373.76915792,330.37036278,458.09654403,368.16337171,null,null]}
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People of Concern - 2019 [projected]

[["Refugees",2580579],["Asylum-seekers",150836],["IDPs",8730566],["Returned IDPs",3454074],["Returned refugees",344000],["Stateless",183500],["Others of concern",4013]]
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Operational Environment

Armed conflicts and the subsequent large-scale displacements continue to characterise the Middle East sub-region. The Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) system-wide, Level 3 emergency declarations for the Syrian Arab Republic (Syria) and Yemen remain in effect. Basic services to displaced people and host communities are expected to remain overstretched in 2019.
The number of internally displaced people (IDPs) in Iraq has gradually declined, with 1.9 million people currently displaced from the conflict, which began in 2014. The number of IDP returnees has increased to 4.1 million. Despite this trend, many IDPs remain in a protracted displacement situation or in secondary or tertiary displacement situations, as was the case for people who have made unsuccessful attempts to return to areas of origin and went back to camps. Poor living conditions in areas of return, ongoing insecurity, the lack of shelter, services and livelihood opportunities, and explosive hazards continued to result in displacement. There is a need for continued support to the displaced population and extensive reconstruction to allow for sustainable return. More than 270,000 Iraqi refugees and asylum-seekers are registered with UNHCR in neighbouring countries namely in Egypt, the Gulf Cooperation Council countries, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and Turkey.
In Israel, despite some limited forms of protection for Eritrean and Sudanese asylum-seekers, the protection environment is anticipated to decline further, with the sustained implementation of policies and legislation intended to encourage departures.
The Syrian Arab Republic (Syria) remains one of the largest, most complex and dynamic humanitarian crisis in the world. While large-scale military operations have largely subsided in some areas, around 6.2 million Syrians remain internally displaced and 5.6 million people have sought refuge in the region as of September 2018; in Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. Humanitarian needs in Syria remain staggering in terms of scale, severity and complexity, with significant protection risks persisting in a number of areas. Some 12.8 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance with some 5.2 million people are in acute need.
In the asylum countries, the protection impact of the crisis on vulnerable men, women, girls and boys remains worrying and will have lasting consequences: early marriage, exposure to trafficking, sexual and gender-based violence as well as to exploitation. UNHCR continues to lead, together with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Regional Refugee and Resilience Plan (3RP), coordinating the work of over 270 partners in the five main countries hosting Syrian refugees and working towards meeting the compelling needs of refugees and vulnerable host communities. For 2019, early disbursement, flexible and multi-year funding, including broadly earmarked contributions, would enable 3RP partners to respond to the most pressing needs in a strategic way.
Finding long-term, sustainable solutions to the plight of refugees will remain integral to UNHCR’s work in 2019. On returns, UNHCR recognizes that refugees have the fundamental human right to return in safety and dignity to their country of origin at a time of their own choosing. The free and informed decision of Syrians to return is fundamental. From January to August 2018, UNHCR had confirmed 23,000 self-organized returns, bringing the number of self-organized refugee returns to Syria since 2015 to 100,000. UNHCR is not able to monitor and confirm every spontaneous return to Syria as it is not facilitating these moves; thus the actual figure of returns is likely much higher. In addition, an estimated 750,000 IDPs have returned home to areas of relative stability in Syria. For those Syrian refugees choosing to return voluntarily, UNHCR will support them to return in dignity. In terms of larger-scale return, UNHCR, UN agencies and NGO partners have been engaged in preparedness and planning since early 2017. The guiding document for returns is the Comprehensive Protection and Solutions Strategy: Protection Thresholds and Parameters for Refugee Return to Syria, issued in February 2018.
In Yemen, 22.2 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance, amounting to 75 per cent of the population. While two million Yemenis have fled their homes and are now internally displaced within the country, a further 280,000 refugees and asylum-seekers of other nationalities, mainly from the Horn of Africa, are also at risk in Yemen. 
As a matter of crucial importance, UNHCR will continue to provide assistance to both refugee and host communities in the Middle East, supporting improvements in social cohesion and peaceful co-existence.
With over 10 million IDPs in the region, UNHCR will also continue to respond to ongoing and protracted displacement inside Iraq, Syria and Yemen. Furthermore, UNHCR will maintain its response to the dramatic consequences of mixed movements in the region, while working to alleviate some of the underlying drivers of such flows.

Strategy and Response

In the context of the six Gulf Cooperation Council countries, UNHCR will work with Governments, national institutions and the private sector to expand asylum and protection space for people of concern, promote expanded multilateral engagement and carry out advocacy initiatives aimed at informing public discourse. In parallel, UNHCR will cooperate closely with civil-society organizations, as well as regional organizations including the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) and the GCC Secretariat. 

2019 Budget for Middle East | USD

Operation Pillar 1
Refugee programme
Pillar 2
Stateless programme
Pillar 3
Reintegration projects
Pillar 4
IDP projects
Iraq 185,673,863465,7800416,337,806602,477,448
Israel 4,491,9670004,491,967
Jordan 371,820,283000371,820,283
Lebanon 562,007,934753,04500562,760,979
Saudi Arabia Regional Office 11,232,785216,0770011,448,862
Syrian Arab Republic 46,968,149198,641259,382,854317,833,049624,382,693
Syrian Regional Refugee Coordination Office 23,013,2820018,000,00041,013,282
Yemen 88,514,71700110,133,920198,648,637
Regional activities 59,629,88700059,629,887
Total 1,353,352,8681,633,543259,382,854862,304,7742,476,674,039

2019 Voluntary Contributions to Middle East | USD

Earmarking / Donor Pillar 1
Refugee programme
Pillar 2
Stateless programme
Pillar 3
Reintegration projects
Pillar 4
IDP projects
Middle East overall
Private donors in Canada 0000325,406 325,406
Private donors in Egypt 00003,303 3,303
Private donors in Kuwait 00003,422 3,422
Private donors in Lebanon 000013,079 13,079
Private donors in Oman 00001,565 1,565
Private donors in Saudi Arabia 000012,609 12,609
Private donors in the United Arab Emirates 000030,622 30,622
Russian Federation 300,0000000 300,000
United States of America 00002,300,000 2,300,000
Middle East overall subtotal 300,0000002,690,008 2,990,008
Canada 1,090,4260000 1,090,426
Germany 0006,818,1820 6,818,182
Japan 2,822,0880010,213,6260 13,035,714
Kuwait 30,0000000 30,000
Netherlands 000428,0000 428,000
Private donors in Brazil 0005960 596
Private donors in Italy 0004550 455
Private donors in Liechtenstein 000200,2000 200,200
Sweden 00001,319,987 1,319,987
United States of America 16,300,00000044,500,000 60,800,000
Iraq subtotal 20,242,5140017,661,05945,819,987 83,723,559
Australia 3,776,4350000 3,776,435
Canada 2,279,6350000 2,279,635
Ireland 1,706,4850000 1,706,485
Italy 373,0070000 373,007
Japan 3,571,4250000 3,571,425
Netherlands 107,0000000 107,000
Norway 4,362,8440000 4,362,844
Organisation of Islamic Cooperation 12,9010000 12,901
Private donors in Canada 190000 19
Private donors in Egypt 6,5450007,062 13,608
Private donors in Germany 0000206,004 206,004
Private donors in Italy 1710000 171
Private donors in Kuwait 1,94900020,385 22,334
Private donors in Lebanon 38,96600091,700 130,666
Private donors in Oman 6,4120009,561 15,973
Private donors in Qatar 000015,000 15,000
Private donors in Saudi Arabia 24,77400043,824 68,598
Private donors in the Netherlands 84,1810000 84,181
Private donors in the United Arab Emirates 58,32500086,375 144,700
Private donors in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland 506,5450000 506,545
Private donors in the United States of America 26,1960001,185,000 1,211,196
Saudi Arabia 442,8060000 442,806
United States of America 39,100,0000000 39,100,000
Jordan subtotal 56,486,6190001,664,911 58,151,531
Australia 4,389,0030000 4,389,003
Canada 4,559,2710000 4,559,271
Denmark 7,294,6580000 7,294,658
European Union 22,363,4590000 22,363,459
Japan 3,571,4280000 3,571,428
Monaco 238,9490000 238,949
Netherlands 682,1250000 682,125
Norway 3,519,5150000 3,519,515
Private donors in Egypt 5,7480007,062 12,810
Private donors in Germany 000045,662 45,662
Private donors in Italy 9,0010004,289 13,290
Private donors in Kuwait 712,03400020,385 732,419
Private donors in Lebanon 26,72500091,700 118,425
Private donors in Oman 5910009,561 10,152
Private donors in Qatar 000015,000 15,000
Private donors in Saudi Arabia 123,55800044,771 168,329
Private donors in Spain 11,41600034,247 45,662
Private donors in the United Arab Emirates 281,15900087,196 368,355
Saudi Arabia 6,373,4590000 6,373,459
Spain 568,8280000 568,828
Switzerland 158,4640000 158,464
Lebanon subtotal 54,889,391000359,872 55,249,263
Regional activities
Italy 209,0150000 209,015
Regional activities subtotal 209,0150000 209,015
Syrian Arab Republic
Canada 0003,799,3920 3,799,392
Common Humanitarian Fund Sudan 00311,8201,685,8940 1,997,715
European Union 000956,3630 956,363
Japan 00481,5007,818,5001,071,428 9,371,428
Norway 0005,871,9910 5,871,991
Private donors in Lebanon 0003360 336
Private donors in Qatar 0000995,100 995,100
Private donors in Saudi Arabia 00019,0260 19,026
Private donors in the United Arab Emirates 000120,859100,000 220,859
Private donors in the United States of America 00001,000,000 1,000,000
Russian Federation 000500,0000 500,000
Saudi Arabia 00005,000,000 5,000,000
Slovenia 000057,405 57,405
Spain 00078,0380 78,038
Sweden 0002,199,9780 2,199,978
United States of America 4,700,00030,566057,469,4340 62,200,000
Syrian Arab Republic subtotal 4,700,00030,566793,32080,519,8128,223,933 94,267,632
Syrian Regional Refugee Coordination Office
Common Humanitarian Fund Sudan 00098,7080 98,708
United States of America 0002,000,0003,000,000 5,000,000
Syrian Regional Refugee Coordination Office subtotal 0002,098,7083,000,000 5,098,708
Belgium 426,697001,917,0530 2,343,750
Canada 00001,139,818 1,139,818
Common Humanitarian Fund Sudan 0003,192,1750 3,192,175
European Union 0003,412,9690 3,412,969
Japan 2,774,63700796,7910 3,571,428
Kuwait 9,906,5420013,093,4580 23,000,000
Private donors in Egypt 0000501,834 501,834
Private donors in Kuwait 000010 10
Private donors in Lebanon 000010,877 10,877
Private donors in Oman 0000573 573
Private donors in Qatar 00014,335,2600 14,335,260
Private donors in Saudi Arabia 00002,387 2,387
Private donors in the United Arab Emirates 000011,725 11,725
Qatar 0001,247,66487,336 1,335,000
Republic of Korea 000500,0000 500,000
Saudi Arabia 0001,164,0010 1,164,001
Spain 000716,1900 716,190
Sweden 00001,649,984 1,649,984
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland 2,100,160002,402,3320 4,502,492
United States of America 000010,000,000 10,000,000
Yemen subtotal 15,208,0360042,777,89413,404,543 71,390,473
Total 152,035,57530,566793,320143,057,47275,163,254 371,080,188