Financial Support for Countries Hosting Syrian Refugees to Increase


6 October 2013 – Geneva, Switzerland – Participants at a United Nations (UN) meeting in Geneva on 1 October agreed on urgent action to mitigate the economic and social impacts of the humanitarian crisis spawned by the Syrian conflict on neighbouring countries struggling under the weight of more than two million Syrian refugees.  In a joint statement, members of the Executive Committee of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) called for massive support to enable Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, and Egypt to continue hosting Syrian refugees.

This includes direct aid to governments; financial and in-kind help to refugee populations and the communities hosting them; assistance for economies, societies, services, infrastructure, environment and security; enhanced resettlement, humanitarian admissions and family reunification possibilities for Syrian refugees in third countries; and development initiatives and projects to help host communities to ease the economic and social costs of hosting refugees.

131006-pmwj16-more-IMAGEHigh Commissioner António Guterres (pictured) welcomed pledges by a number of countries for resettlement or humanitarian admission of over 10,000 highly vulnerable Syrian refugees. He also called on all countries, particularly in Europe and in the extended Middle East, to allow access to asylum and to introduce more generous resettlement schemes.

In addition, he hailed expanded initiatives by international development actors and financial institutions to bolster over-stretched public services and fragile infrastructures benefiting both host communities and refugees.

Along with sending over two million people fleeing to neighbouring countries, the conflict in Syria, which began in March 2011, has led to more than 100,000 deaths and displaced 4.2 million people inside the country. People who may have had income cannot purchase food due to high inflation, he noted. Syria had also experienced the worst harvest in years. Of particular concern are Syrian women who cannot be reached by WFP delivery convoys, and who are unable to feed their children.

Muhannad Hadi, the World Food Programme’s (WFP) Emergency Regional Coordinator for Syria, told reporters in Geneva today that the agency is concerned with the ever-increasing number of displaced people and the fact that all sectors of the economy are collapsing. “Despite all of the increasing challenges, WFP is expanding its operations and is hoping to reach three million people in October, and as many as four million in November,” said Mr. Hadi.

The United Nations is an international organization established in 1945 to facilitate cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and world peace. Currently with 193 members states, the UN and its specialized agencies meet regularly throughout the year. The UN Headquarters is in New York City, with other main offices in Geneva, Nairobi, and Vienna. More information can be found at http://www.un.org/en/

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees was established on December 14, 1950 by the United Nations General Assembly. The agency is mandated to lead and co-ordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee problems worldwide. Its primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees. In more than six decades, the agency has helped tens of millions of people restart their lives. Today, a staff of some 7,685 people in more than 125 countries continues to help some 33.9 million persons. More information at http://www.unhcr.org/cgi-bin/texis/vtx/home

Source: United Nations