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Launching of a unique project of electrification in the refugee camp Zaatari, sponsored by the government of the Czech Republic

On July 14th 2016, a delegation from the Czech Embassy in Amman led by H.E. Petr Hladik, Ambassador of the Czech Republic, attended an opening ceremony of a brand-new electrical network in Zaatari refugee camp.

In his speech Mr. Hladik highlighted the fact that although the Czech Republic itself is currently facing the issue of migration, it has nevertheless focused on helping wherever it is needed. Dignity and welfare of refugees as well as assistance to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in tackling the refugee crisis have been the main drivers for Czech government’s aid. Ambassador also mentioned that if every country the size of the Czech Republic contributed at least the same amount, the situation of refugees and Jordan itself would be more positive.

Czech Ministry of Interior donated about 2 million USD (45 million Czech Crowns) for the then-inaugurated project of household electricity network in Zaatari. Thanks to this project, the refugees can access stable and uninterrupted supply of electrical power for 9 to 16 hours per day. This dramatically improves their living standards as well as perspectives of their future lives. School-aged children being now able to study and do their homework even after sunset is just one of the examples.

Unique project, which was realized in the close cooperation with UNHCR, Jordanian Governorate of Mafraq and Jordanian company IDECO, is the first of its kind worldwide. There has never been a similar project of this scale and technical expertise in any large refugee camp before.

During the opening ceremony, both Hovig Etyemezian, chief of UNHCR in Zaatari, and Dr. Ahmad Al-Zoubi, Governor of Mafraq, expressed repeatedly their sincerest gratitude to the Czech Republic. Whole event was extensively covered by media, including worldwide news channels and stations, such as AFP, Al-Jazeera or Al-Arabiya and also by Jordanian mass media.

Present guests had also the opportunity to meet with the camp inhabitants and to discuss with them the project benefits for their daily lives.

Zaatari is the largest refugee facility in Jordan, currently hosting approximately 80,000 refugees from a war-torn Syria. During the span of conflict, up to half a million of Syrians went through the camp. The actual number of Syrian refugees in Jordan is currently about 1.3 million.