Today the European Commission announces €445 million in humanitarian aid for the Syria crisis in 2016. The support is part of the Commission's pledge made at the conference 'Supporting Syria and the Region' held earlier this year in London, where the EU and the Member States pledged over €3 billion to assist the Syrian people this year.
EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, Christos Stylianides, said: "Today is yet another sad milestone in the world's worst humanitarian disaster since the Second World War which now enters its sixth year, with over 13 million Syrians in need of life-saving aid in their country alone. The EU is committed to supporting the Syrian people, for as long as it takes. Today's funding will support the most vulnerable Syrians inside the country and in neighbouring Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. We need more unconditional humanitarian access now, more than ever to build on the recent efforts during the cessation of hostilities in the country."
Funding will be channelled through the UN, international organisations, and international NGO partners, and will respond to life-threatening needs in the areas of food aid, health, water, sanitation and hygiene as well as education. It will be allocated per country as follows: Syria (€140 million), Lebanon (€87 million), Jordan (€53 million) and Turkey (€165 million).
After five years of conflict the humanitarian situation in Syria remains deeply troubling with more than 50% of the population displaced inside Syria and in neighbouring countries. Inside Syria, thanks to life-saving aid provided by the Commission, some 2 million people have gained access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene items, 850 000 people have received food, 1 million people have received non-food items and shelter, and 350 000 children have been covered by child protection programmes.
In Jordan, the Commission’s humanitarian aid is helping more than 350 000 Syrian refugees, while in Lebanon, through its partners, the EU’s humanitarian aid reaches around 665 000 people. In Turkey, EU humanitarian aid is funding the provisions of food, health assistance and protection through humanitarian partners and is now being channelled to the facility for refugees in Turkey. On 4 March 2016, the EU announced €40 million in humanitarian aid through the UN World Food Programme (WFP) working in close cooperation with the Turkish Red Crescent as part of the first allocation to the Facility.
The EU is the leading donor in the international response to the Syrian crisis, with over €5 billion from the EU and Member States collectively in humanitarian, development, economic and stabilisation assistance. The EU's humanitarian aid is impartial and independent and goes to people in need regardless of ethnic or religious considerations.