Office of the Spokesperson
January 29, 2013
Today, President Obama reaffirmed the United States’ continued commitment and support for the Syrian people by announcing an additional $155 million in humanitarian aid to help meet the acute needs of people inside Syria and refugees across the region who are affected by the violence in Syria. This new funding includes the $10 million announced last week in Turkey by the visiting U.S. delegation. This new assistance brings the United States’ total humanitarian response to the crisis in Syria to approximately $365 million to date.
In December 2012, the United Nations issued revised humanitarian appeals to help meet the growing needs of those affected by the conflict in Syria. The United States strongly supports these appeals as the most effective way for donors to provide urgently needed humanitarian aid to the Syrian people. The United States is helping to meet urgent needs in all 14 governorates inside Syria through its support for the UN appeals and by partnering with non-governmental organizations.
U.S. assistance is:
· helping feed millions of Syrians throughout all 14 governorates;
· providing medicine and medical treatment in areas including Damascus, Dar’a and Homs;
· immunizing one million Syrian children against preventable diseases like the measles;
· providing winter supplies to Syrians in areas including Aleppo, Dayr az Zawr and Homs.
With this additional funding, the United States is providing nearly $202 million to address critical needs inside of Syria. U.S. assistance is tackling severe food shortages through robust funding of international and non-governmental organizations providing food packages to those in need and flour to restart bakeries. Funding for emergency health care and supplies will enable surgeons in field hospitals and mobile clinics to save more lives. For those taking refuge in damaged public buildings, we are providing winter supplies such as blankets, heating stoves, and heavy-duty plastic sheeting to cover windows and other damaged areas. We are supporting the provision of household items, shelter support, cash assistance, health care, and community protection services to displaced Syrians. U.S. funding enables direct food, cash, and winter assistance for more than 400,000 Palestinian refugees inside Syria who are affected by the violence.
The United States is providing $5 million in additional regional contributions to UN agencies as part of the refugee response, including in Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq.
The United States is providing over $52 million for Syrians in Jordan who have fled the violence in Syria.
U.S. assistance to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the World Food Program (WFP), the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and non-governmental organizations is helping Syrians living in local communities as well as in Za’atri camp. In addition to providing food, water, winter supplies and shelter, U.S. assistance is supporting medical assistance, efforts to address psychological trauma, and support measures to prevent and respond to gender-based violence. Community impact projects provide needed support to Syrians as well as to Jordanian host communities. U.S. assistance helps children through informal and remedial education programs, formal schooling, and programs that help them deal with trauma. Partners are also providing emergency transport and reception and health referrals.
With this additional funding, the United States is providing nearly $51 million to help support displaced Syrians and Palestinians in Lebanon who have fled the violence in Syria.
Previous U.S. contributions in Lebanon are helping provide rent support, household items, and food vouchers. Additionally, U.S. assistance supports primary health care consultations, services, and emergency medical care.
As part of this new announcement, the United States is supporting UNHCR Lebanon’s critical work providing for the basic humanitarian needs of Syrians in Lebanon, including medical services and supplies, such as clean water, blankets, and shelter support. Additional support to WFP will continue to provide food vouchers and dry rations to refugees throughout Lebanon.
The United States is also supporting efforts to assist Palestinian refugees who have fled Syria by providing education, relief supplies, shelter, and medical care in Lebanon.
In addition, the United States is also providing contributions to other UN agencies as well as international NGOs providing much needed shelter and medical care to Syrian refugees in Lebanon.
With this additional funding, the United States is providing more than $34 million to help those in Turkey who have fled the violence in Syria.
The Government of Turkey, through the Turkish Red Crescent, is leading the relief effort with strong support from the United States and international partners. U.S. support of UN agencies helps feed Syrians, provides safe, child-friendly learning environments, and resources like household items, winter tents and blankets. The United States is also funding measures to prevent and respond to gender-based violence.
As part of this new announcement, the United States is supporting the expansion of programs providing debit cards and cookware so Syrians can purchase and cook food for their families. This contribution includes funding to the Turkish Red Crescent for winterization support in the camps. U.S. funding also supports primary health care for urban refugees and Syrian children dealing with the trauma they have endured.
With this assistance, the United States is providing nearly $19 million to help support Syrians who have fled to Iraq.
The United States is providing food aid, medical supplies, emergency and basic health care, shelter materials, clean water, hygiene education and supplies, and other relief supplies to refugees in host communities and camps. Separately, the United States continues its strong support for the thousands of Iraqi refugees who have returned to Iraq as a result of the violence in Syria.
As part of this new announcement, in addition to UNHCR, the United States is supporting IOM for the provision of basic domestic and hygiene items and other non-food items for Syrian refugee camps in Iraq. Additional funding through WFP ensures the continued provision of hot meals, bread, dry rations and food vouchers.
The United States is providing more than $2 million in food assistance and to support UNHCR’s efforts for Syrian refugees in Egypt.
The United States recognizes and applauds the generosity of the governments and people of Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq, Egypt and other nations hosting all those who have fled the violence in Syria. These countries have taken on a significant burden. They are not alone.
For more detailed information on the U.S. Government’s response to the humanitarian crisis in Syria, please visit: http://www.usaid.gov/crisis/syria.