According to international law, refugees have the right to return to their homes of origin, receive real property restitution, and compensation for losses and damages. The UN General Assembly set forth the framework for resolving the Palestinian refugee case in UN Resolution 194 (III) which provides: repatriation for those refugees "wishing to return to their homes and live in peace with their neighbors," or compensation for those choosing not to return. On November 22, 1974, Resolution 3236 clarified the right to return as an "inalienable right". In Res. 302 (IV), the UN General Assembly created UNRWA and assigned the agency the task of caring for Palestinian refugees. UNRWA defined Palestinian refugees as persons who resided in Palestine two years prior to the outbreak of hostilities in 1948 and who lost their homes and livelihoods as a result of that war.
Adapted from The Palestinian Dispossession - Frequently Asked Questions
May 15, 2003 By MIFTAH
Badil Resource Center for Refugee Rights
Council for the Advancement of Arab-British Understanding
Shaml - Palestinian Diaspora and Refugee Center
United Nations Relief and Works Agency
U.S. Committee for Refugees