State-run Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA) has spearheaded some 543 projects across Palestinian territories between 2005-2018.
The agency, according to TİKA's Palestine coordinator Bülent Korkmaz, has run 332 projects in the West Bank, 81 in East Jerusalem and 130 in the Gaza Strip, so far.
Korkmaz explained that the projects are the outcome of the implementation of a "Turkish model of development," highlighting the difference in humanitarian aid compared to aid by "countries with a neo-colonialist approach," who are expecting to exploit the recipients.
The humanitarian projects include education and health services to water supplies and standard food packages for needy families, as well as restoration of historic sites. The organization also supports social infrastructure, NGOs and the empowerment of women.
"[TIKA] is different from other organizations which pursue 'neo-colonial' gains under the garb of humanitarian and development aid," Korkmaz said. "We operate with the spirit of research, while identifying problems and opportunities, and striving to create alternative ways. Our priority is not religious, ethnic or political groups, we focus on those who are needy.”
The US$62-million Palestinian-Turkish Friendship Hospital will be opened later this year.
Korkmaz said that the aid agency was involved in projects across 58 different countries with 60 offices and had access to 170 countries. "Undoubtedly, every country is special to us, but, Palestine and Jerusalem have a separate status.”