Kuwait City, April 1: The UN relief and humanitarian organisations may not be able to launch relief and assistance on a massive scale for over millions of Syrian refugees as member tions committed only $3.8 billion at a donors conference in Kuwait City as against the requirement of $8.4 billion. The crisis in Syria was of an unprecedented level and needed generous fincial support from the intertiol community to provide food, shelter and medicines to refugees in various tions like Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq, top UN officials said at the conference on Tuesday.
Millions face hunger and malnutrition inside Syria as relief teams are not in a position to reach them because of ongoing violence in vulnerable areas. Access to such people is limited. However, the efforts of the member tions are laudable, they said.
The conference, which was attended by 68 tions, maged to collect $3.8 billion with the US and Kuwait emerging as major donors pledging $507 million and $500 million respectively. The European Union also pledged to contribute more than one billion euros while the United Arab Emirates offered $100 million.
At the end of the conference, UN Secretary General Ban Ki moon thanked Kuwait and other members of the intertiol community for their generous support to the cause, but called for “overwhelming and extraordiry efforts to mobilise significant funds”.
He felt that it was a shame that the intertiol community has failed to find a solution to the four-year-old civil war that has claimed over 222,000 lives while interlly displacing millions.
Ban said that there was an urgent need to find a political solution to the problem so that the miseries of the Syrians come to an end.
EU Aid Commissioner Christos Styliamides said that Syrians were living in poverty, misery and deprivation and there was an urgent need to help them generously at this critical juncture.
Several speakers said that the crisis in Syria has created safe havens for terrorist groups who use it as a launching pad to carry out attacks. The UN Security Council has failed to find a solution to the crisis.
The conference was also attended by the prime ministers of Jordan and Lebanon, besides the vice president of Iraq. These countries host almost four million Syrian refugees.
Kuwait has hosted two other donor conferences in the past and collected more than $3 billion from various donors. (IANS)