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So far this year only 11% of the pledged funds for Syrian refugees have been received

UNCHR camp
UNHCR is requesting 9.95 billion euros to come to the aid of the 5.7 million Syrian refugees. (Photo: Jordan News)
AMMAN — Funding of the regional plan to respond to the Syrian crisis and the countries hosting them has reached in the first five months of this year only 11 percent of the 6.4 billion euros pledged last year, raising concerns among most organizations working with these refugees.اضافة اعلان

According to the European Commission website, over 4.8 billion euros were pledged by the EU, with over 3.1 billion euros coming from the European Commission and 1.7 billion euros from the EU member states. EU countries have remained the largest donors supporting people in Syria and the region, having mobilized 27.4 billion euros overall since the beginning of the crisis in 2011.

“After 11 years of suffering, we cannot and will not forget the Syrian people. The humanitarian situation in Syria is only getting worse. Over 14.6 million Syrians need humanitarian assistance inside Syria alone, 1.2 million more than in 2021. Millions more need continued support in their host countries in the region as well. Despite the challenges, the EU continues delivering humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable Syrians and their host communities,” Commissioner for Crisis Management at European Commission Janez Lenarčič said.

UN High Commissioner for Refugees in the Middle East and North Africa spokesperson Rula Amin was quoted by a local media outlet as saying that the funding so far represents “an unacceptable number”; she called for a “more significant and serious commitment to humanitarian funding operations to reach those in need”.

UNHCR is requesting 9.95 billion euros to come to the aid of the 5.7 million Syrian refugees who live in different host countries or are internally displaced, according to Amin.

As such, the amount donated thus far gives reason to worry. Still, according to UNHCR Spokesperson Lilly Carlise, who said the commission “was somewhat concerned about decreasing humanitarian funding, especially given all the other crises happening in the world, like in Ukraine and Afghanistan”, the level of funding pledged at the Tuesday donors’ meeting “was not expected”.

“The pledge showed that the international community is still committed to Syrians inside Syria and in hosting countries like Jordan,” Carlise said.

She added that the 11 percent can be expected to increase “because some donor countries have committed to giving money later in the year”.

President of Jordan Red Crescent Society Mohammad Al-Hadid told Jordan News that the need is much higher than the support received and urged the international community to honor the pledges it made.

Jordan is carrying most of the burden, Hadid said, adding that it “cannot carry on hosting this large number of refugees since the Jordanian government is in a dire situation regarding finances”.

According to the director of Phenix Center for Economic Studies, Ahmad Awad, funding is weak and expected to decrease further “because there are other priorities in Europe now in light of the Russian-Ukraine conflict”.

“We already witnessed the suspension of many refugee-related projects, with the funds donors allocated to these projects redirected to Ukraine,” Awad said.

“Our role is to focus on priorities, which are to improve economic growth and enhance the livelihood of Syrian refugees, improve the health and education sectors, and enhance the independence of local NGOs whose work is restricted, which affects the quality of their services,” he said.

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