The United Nations has called on the world's governments and the entire global community to spare a helping hand to assist some seven million in urgent need of humanitarian aid in Syria.
Valerie Amos, UN Emergency Relief coordinator, in a conference in Kuwait, said the global body needs a total of US$4.4 billion for Syria and neighbouring countries alone just for this year. So far, the UN has raised US$1.84 billion.
"We are doing what we can but it is not enough," Ms Amos said, warning that thousands of Syrian refugees in Lebanon could face reductions in vital food aid.
"The challenge we face is that the increased financial requirements for Syria could imply diverting funds from other very serious crises around the world," she said.
The Syria crisis, which started in March 2011, has killed more than 110,000 people. More than two million have fled Syria to take refuge in neighbouring countries. A further four million have likewise been internally displaced.
"I call on Governments to help us meet this unprecedented crisis while still meeting their commitments to other emergencies," Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary-General, stated on the opening day of the UN's 68th General Assembly.
Donate for an Aid Convoy to #Syria http://t.co/mix9ryxCet 100% Donation Policy. Most importantly, make dua for our Brothers and Sisters. — . (@Alhamdhulillaah) September 17, 2013
"The group of relief aid workers, however, need more donations by other countries," Ms Amos said.
Melissa Fleming, UN High Commissioner for Refugees spokesperson, told a news briefing in Geneva that some 720,000 Syrians have, so far, poured into Lebanon. On Sept. 25, the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, as well as Lebanese President Michel Sleiman, will meet to discuss how Lebanon will cope with the Syrian refugee influx. "The group will examine ways to help Lebanon maintain political stability and security... and help the country bear the burden of a continuous flow of Syrian refugees," an unidentified Lebanese government official told AFP. Data from the Lebanese government places the number of Syrians in the country at 1.3 million, including those who have left Syria way before the conflict escalated 30 months ago.
UN appeals for funds to avert cut in food aid to Syrian @refugees in Lebanon http://t.co/53RuAcbGKj — UN News Centre (@UN_News_Centre) September 17, 2013
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