UN launches $397 million humanitarian appeal for Syria

The United Nations has announced a $397 million humanitarian appeal to aid the people of Syria following the multiple earthquake disaster on February 6.

“The Syria effort brings together the entire UN system and humanitarian partners and will help secure desperately needed, life-saving relief for nearly 5 million Syrians – including shelter, healthcare, food and protection,” UN Secretary-General António Guterres told reporters as the appeal was launched.

The Flash Appeal will ensure assistance to the people with the most urgent humanitarian needs, covering an initial period of three months, until May. The Secretary-General said a similar appeal is being finalised for survivors across the border in Türkiye.

Aid must reach those in need

UN Transshipment Hub, Reyhanli, Türkiye
UN Transshipment Hub, Reyhanli, Türkiye. This is the first cross-border aid convoy to north-west Syria since the earthquakes © UNOCHA/Madevi Sun Suon

Tens of thousands of people have been killed and injured as a result of the disaster, and thousands of buildings, including schools and hospitals, have been destroyed. Millions of people across the region are struggling for survival, homeless and in freezing temperatures.

The humanitarian community is rapidly adapting to the unfolding situation but has also been severely impacted.

“We all know that lifesaving aid has not been getting in at the speed and scale needed. The scale of this disaster is one of the worst in recent memory,” the Secretary-General said.

A regional Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) allocation of $25 million was announced on 7 February, with a second allocation of $25 million specifically for Syria announced on 10 February. Additional funding is urgently required to prevent a further deterioration of the humanitarian situation.

“I have an urgent message to the international community: The human suffering from this epic natural disaster should not be made even worse by manmade obstacles — access, funding, supplies,” said Mr Guterres.

Public service provision – water, electricity, heating, and social services – which were already under strain before the earthquake, are under severe pressure, and people’s access to emergency healthcare is limited with hospitals overwhelmed. Lack of fuel and heavy machinery and equipment are also major issues, hampering efforts to quickly reach those most in need.

“I urge Member States and others to fully fund this effort without delay and help the millions of children, women and men whose lives have been upended by this generational disaster.  This is a moment for unity, for common humanity and concerted action.”

If you wish to donate, please visit Donate:Türkiye-Syria Earthquake.

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