The conflict in Syria has recently entered its eight year, and, according to the UN, more than 12 million people have been forced to flee, either internally or to the neighboring countries. The need for humanitarian aid and assistance in Syria and the neighboring region is enormous. Today, Minister of Development Cooperation Ulla Tørnæs announces a historically large contribution of DKK 730m to the crisis. This happens at an international conference hosted by the UN and the EU in Brussels.
Minister of Development Cooperation Ulla Tørnæs says, “It is hard to comprehend the unbelievable suffering that the Syrian civilian population goes through. The conflict has now entered its eight year, and the number of people affected continues to rise. Consequently, the government proceeds to prioritize assistance to one of the world’s biggest humanitarian crises – both in Syria and the neighboring countries.”
Ulla Tørnæs continues, “Meanwhile, we must remember that the development in Syria directly impacts Denmark. Therefore, it is exceptionally important that we assist as much as possible in the neighboring region; the sizeable refugee flows, from the crisis and towards Europe within recent years, attest to this. Half of the DKK 730m is allocated to the neighboring region, in order to focus on sustainable strengthening of resilience and local development among refugees and local communities in Lebanon and Jordan.”
Among other things, Denmark provides DKK 140m in acute humanitarian assistance dispersed with DKK 50m for UN’s humanitarian country funds for Syria ensuring coordination and emergency aid, DKK 35m for UNHCR and the ICRC respectively, as well as DKK 20m to UNRWA’s work for Palestinian refugees in Syria and Lebanon. This is in addition to the DKK 61m that has already been granted to Danish humanitarian organizations’ work in and around Syria, just as additional DKK 149m is allocated for humanitarian efforts later this year. Finally, DKK 380m is allocated for development and stabilization efforts in the neighboring countries.
The crisis in Syria is one of the worst humanitarian crises faced by the international community today. The conflict escalated during the first months of 2018 severely worsening the humanitarian situation. Among other things, there has been a significant rise in the number of internally displaced persons. More than 700.000 have been forced to flee in 2018. Currently, it is estimated that there are up to 7 million internally displaced persons in the country. At the same time, more than 5.5 million people have fled Syria – the vast majority to the neighboring countries.