International donors pledge $6bn in aid for Syria

2017-04-05 21:02
(AFP)

(AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Brussels - International donors pledged $6bn in aid for war-ravaged Syria on Wednesday as the UN Security Council held emergency talks over a suspected chemical attack that killed dozens in a rebel-held province.

Donors from more than 70 countries meeting at a conference on Syria in Brussels made a "collective pledge of $6bn for this year alone," EU Humanitarian Aid Commissioner Christos Stylianides said.

He described the pledge, which appeared to approach the conference hosts' target, as "an impressive figure."

Syria's "needs are massive. Our conference is sending a powerful message," he said. We are not letting down the people of Syria."

Displaced by violence

However, the good will at the meeting was shadowed by the chemical attack on Tuesday in Idlib that killed 75 people.

Responding to the grim news, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres appealed for Syria's warring factions and government backers such as Russia and Iran to bring an end to a six-year conflict that has taken the lives of almost 400 000 people.

"Nobody is winning this war, everybody is losing," Guterres said. "It is having a detrimental and destabilising effect on the entire region and it is providing a focus that is feeding the new threat of global terrorism."

Nearly half the Syrian population has been displaced by the violence, with millions seeking sanctuary in neighbouring Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey, or heading further west to Europe.

UN agencies estimate war damage across Syria so far at $350bn, including physical destruction and the loss of economic activity. Four out of five people are living in poverty.

"Behind these figures lies a gradual draining of hope and a turn toward despair that we must reverse," Guterres said.

Whole world watching

While it was unclear who was responsible for the chemical attack, many fingers at the Brussels conference pointed toward Syrian President Bashar Assad.

"The world should not be shocked because it's letting such a regime do what it is doing. What should shock us is the increase of children dying and that the whole world is watching," Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri said. "Everyone is coming to Brussels to make a statement and the regime made its statement in Syria."

Hariri said Lebanon has been overwhelmed by the arrival of some 1.5 million Syrian refugees and "cannot sustain this issue anymore. The international community has to do something."


Read more on:    un  |  belgium  |  syria conflict

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/World
 

Makeover saves dog’s life

Lucky Charlie got a complete make-over that helped him get adopted.

 
 

Paws

For the love of Corgis!
Can we communicate with our pets?
8 great natural remedies for your pet
Buying a puppy? Don’t get scammed!
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.