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Emergency assistance for people in Syria

Emergencies, News/feature, Syria, 2013
Syrian Refugees on the Lebonon and Syria Border UN Photo Main

700,000 people have sought refuge in neighbouring countries and over 4 million in Syria urgently need humanitarian assistance.

As the violence in Syria escalates, the lives of millions have been affected. 700,000 people have sought refuge in neighbouring countries and over 4 million in Syria urgently need humanitarian assistance. 

In response to the deteriorating situation we are providing an additional €4.7 million in funding and life-saving emergency supplies.

 Food, water and medical supplies are urgently needed and a particularly harsh winter has increased the hardship felt by those without shelter.  Our funding will help our partners on the ground, including the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the International Committee for the Red Cross, provide vital assistance to people affected by the conflict. 

Minister Costello announced the funding at a major humanitarian meeting on Syria held in Kuwait. The conference, chaired by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon aims to raise $1.5 billion to assist the more than 4 million people in need. 

Speaking at the humanitarian conference, Minister Costello said

 “This funding underlines Ireland’s commitment to the urgent humanitarian needs in Syria and in neighbouring countries.  Ireland’s contribution of €4.7m will help alleviate the terrible suffering of the Syrian people. It brings the total value of the Irish Government’s response to the crisis in Syria to €7.1 million.”

As Presidency of the EU, Ireland has also been calling on other donors to step up their own assistance efforts.  The Kuwait conference has seen a total EU contribution of over €270 million from both the European Commission and individual Member States. Ireland will also continue to emphasise the need for all parties to the conflict to facilitate humanitarian access and aid delivery to the people in need, to respect the neutrality of humanitarian aid and to abide by International Humanitarian Law.

How we have allocated our funding

As early as March 2012 we provided €500,000 in emergency funding for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the United Nations High Commissions for Refugees (UNHCR) and the World Food Programme. Since then Ireland has provided additional support of €1,750,000 to UN agencies and NGO partners who are providing life saving medical assistance to Syrians both in Syria and neighbouring countries. This also included supplies of non-food items from our stocks in Dubai. A contribution of €200,000 to spell out UNRWA for Palestinian refugees caught up in the conflict and the additional €4.7 million brings Ireland’s response to the crisis to €7.1 million.