The United Nations has made a new major call for humanitarian and development assistance for Syrians in 2015, targeting nearly 18 million Syrians in Syria and throughout the Middle East, urging finances of more than US$8.4 billion.
“The appeal includes two main elements: support for over 12 million displaced and conflict-affected people inside Syria, and addressing the needs of the millions of Syrian refugees in the region and the countries and communities hosting them,” said a joint statement by the UN Refugee Agency, the United Nations Development Program and the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
More than 200,000 Syrians have been killed and more than two million displaced by a four-year civil war that broke out following the 2011 uprising against the rule of president Bashar al-Assad.
The UN 2015 strategy seeks to respond to pressing needs of 12.2 million in Syria, requiring finances of $2.9 billion, the statement explained, noting that the world organization is lobbying humanitarian groups in Syria and neighboring countries to that end.
“Conflict has devastated millions of Syrians’ lives, trapping them in conflict areas and denying them access to basic provisions and healthcare. Many live in fear, children can’t go to school and parents can’t go out to work,” said Valerie Amos, UN Under-Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator. “This plan, if fully funded, can help us provide food and medicine for children, shelter families from the cold and support those who are desperate and traumatized. Syria is a very difficult and dangerous place to work but the humanitarian community remains committed to helping the most vulnerable people caught in this crisis.”
Under the new aid scheme, 20.6 million people in Jordan, Lebanon and Egypt will also benefit from enhanced local infrastructure in those countries, in addition to receiving health, education, water and sewage services, where service providers will receive training and capacity building.