Minister Costello announces €1 million in funding to support Syrian refugees03 September 2013
Minister for Trade and Development Joe Costello T.D., today announced a further €1 million in humanitarian assistance for refugees fleeing from the crisis in Syria. This funding will support UNHCR and UNICEF to provide food, water, sanitation, protection and shelter to refugees. Commenting on this latest funding the Minister said:
“The recent announcement that one million Syrian children are now refugees is yet another stark reminder of the immense human suffering caused by this horrific civil war. To put this statistic into context, in Ireland this figure equates to almost every child under the age of eighteen being forced to flee their homes. These children have suffered terrible trauma and lost their homes. In addition this generation of Syrian children is losing out on a normal education due to displacement. Ireland is committed to helping UNHCR and UNICEF provide them with basic services in the refugee camps.”
According to figures announced yesterday by UNHCR the total number of people displaced by the conflict, both inside and outside of Syria, has now reached 7 million – one third of the Syria’s population. With almost two million refugees across the region, host countries, such as Jordan, Turkey, Iraq and Lebanon, are also under great pressure as Syrians continue to flee in great numbers. Highlighting the impact of this crisis across the region, Minister Costello added:
“Countries in the region have shown great generosity in taking in large numbers of Syrian refugees, but are under immense strain as a result. The assistance announced today will benefit both those fleeing the conflict in Syria and the communities who have shown such great solidarity towards them. ”
This latest contribution brings Ireland’s total support in response to the enormous needs in Syria and neighbouring countries to almost €11 million.
Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Eamon Gilmore, T.D., will discuss the crisis at a meeting of EU Foreign Ministers on 6/7 September in Vilnius. Ireland fully supports efforts to reach a political solution to the Syrian crisis.