Human Appeal, international aid and development charity, has welcomed a pledge made by 41 donors to contribute a combined sum of $6 billion (£4.68 billion) this year to humanitarian programmes in Syria. During a United Nations-supported conference staged in Brussels, the money was promised to support those affected by ongoing conflict in the country. A further $3.7 billion was pledged for 2018.
During the event in the Belgian capital, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said that the need for humanitarian aid and civilian protection in Syria has never been greater. He added that UN agencies along with their partners are determined to reach those in need through all means possible.
However, while praising the pledge, Human Appeal called for more action to be taken to prevent further suffering and loss of life.
Appeal to international governments
The organisation, which is one of the leading aid providers in Syria, reached out to governments around the world to come together to take a range of steps. It made a plea for a more principled approach to monitoring war crimes and suggested that more investment should be concentrated in Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon, the three countries that have taken the highest numbers of Syrian refugees.
Human Appeal also called for action to be taken to make it easier for humanitarian aid to be transported throughout Syria and said there should be greater protection for aid workers based there. The charity went on to say that steps should be taken to ensure that each child in Syria has access to full-time education, and that more be done to host and help those who have fled the country and travelled to Europe.
‘A lot more needs to be done’
Chief executive of Human Appeal Othman Moqbel stated that while the pledge of money is welcome, “a lot more needs to be done”. He added that $6 billion won’t stop the conflict and suggested that, in the wake of the recent chemical attacks in the country, the international has to assure Syrians that it is monitoring war crimes.
Human Appeal is involved in a range of projects in Syria, including a flour distribution initiative that supplies food each month to 200,000 people. It is also running a paediatric and gynaecological hospital based in Aleppo that offers a range of child healthcare and maternity services to around 20,000 Syrians each month. In addition, it is helping to run schools, improve access to clean water, provide shelter to displaced people and run ambulances.