The Federal Foreign Office has increased humanitarian assistance for Syria by another 40 million euros. Commenting on this, Federal Foreign Minister Steinmeier issued the following statement on the sidelines of the NATO Foreign Ministers Meeting in Brussels today (3 December):
Millions of people who had to flee from the savage war in Syria depend on assistance for their survival, especially in light of the imminent winter. It cannot be that families have to suffer from hunger and cold because aid organisations are unable to take care of them due to a lack of funds.
In the Berlin Communiqué of 28 October, the international community affirmed its responsibility not to abandon the refugees from Syria and their host countries. We must now deliver on this commitment by taking action.
We have therefore just provided the World Food Programme with another 15 million euros for food aid in Syria, Jordan and Turkey from our last budget reserves for 2014.
Furthermore, we have decided to make available another 25 million euros for winter relief, polio vaccination campaigns and other emergency assistance measures taken by the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross.
On 1 December, the World Food Programme (WFP) announced that, due to a funding crisis, it had been forced to suspend food aid to Syria and its neighbouring countries with immediate effect.
In 2014, the Federal Foreign Office has provided a total of 35 million euros from its humanitarian assistance budget to support WFP measures to alleviate the crisis in Syria, which amounts to a 20% increase compared to 2013. The Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development is also supporting WFP programmes in Syria’s neighbouring countries.
All in all, humanitarian assistance for Syria and its neighbouring countries funded by the Federal Foreign Office totals 162 million euros in 2014.