The 11th meeting of the top donors group for Syria opened Wednesday in Doha under the chairmanship of the UN Secretary-Generals Humanitarian Envoy Dr. Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Muraikhi.
The meeting discussed the mechanisms to achieve the pledges made by donor countries in previous meetings and conferences, especially the Brussels Conference, and the mechanisms of cooperation of these countries with each other and with the United Nations organizations and non-governmental organizations working on the ground to achieve the greatest possible benefit for the brotherly Syrian people and discuss all issues and challenges facing the implementation of the work by the Humanitarian assistance by the United Nations and donor countries.
HE Dr. Al Muraikhi, called on donors to focus not only on financial commitments, in which donors have made significant strides, but also on non-financial pledges and consideration of future needs.
HE urged donor countries not to depart from the UN's humanitarian response plan for Syria, pointing out that this places more emphasis on the actual needs of refugees and displaced persons, and that projects by the United Nations and non-governmental organizations are not repeated.
HE Dr. Al Muraikhi praised the important role played by major donors to support Syria in order to alleviate the suffering of the Syrian people, noting the role of meetings between supporters in promoting dialogue and dynamic participation among them,stressing that the major donors expressed a strong support at the Brussels conference in support of Syria and the region, last April, for a better humanitarian action more effective in order to alleviate the suffering of the Syrian people.
Out of the $6 billion in funding pledged at the Brussels conference, $5.3 billion has been implemented, HE said, praising donors' commitment to their commitments,and noting that it is important that donors continue to provide the necessary support, especially as the needs of the Syrian people are increasing, especially with the onset of low temperatures and the emergence of new challenges for the Syrians as the winter approaches.
HE Dr. Al Muraikhi highlighted the role played by the host countries of more than 5 million Syrian refugees in their societies, pointing out that the political, economic and social consequences of hosting them are a heavy burden on these countries.
He added that the support goes beyond money alone and reaches the important political commitments made at the Brussels and London conferences, as confirmed at the United Nations General Assembly, noting that supporting the measures taken to support education in Lebanon or business and investment in Jordan shows that the donor community stands firmly and strongly alongside the region to respond fully to the consequences of the conflict in Syria.
The United Nations attaches great importance to the humanitarian issue in Syria, HE said, recalling the UN Secretary-General's letter two months ago on World Humanitarian Day, in which he said that millions of civilians around the world who have suffered from conflict must be highlighted. He brought attention to the targeting of civilians in Syria from targeting to make them more vulnerable, leaving hundreds of thousands of people dead and wounded and millions displaced.
HE UN Secretary-General's Humanitarian Envoy Dr. Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Muraikhi addressed the health care and education workers conditions and the recently resumed attacks on hospitals after a relative calm, which led to the reduction of these services, considering that collective punishment of the Syrian people.
‘We must remain firm in our collective agenda of condemning such attacks that haven left 830 medical professionals dead since the beginning of the conflict and destruction of a healthcare system already struggling to provide assistance. Civilians and civilian infrastructure emphatically cannot be targets,’ he said.
‘The international community demands an end to these attacks, particularly those that may amount to war crimes,’
Al Muraikhi added that ‘of those Syrian civilians who escape attack, one in three lacks reliable access to food. Syrians have to resort to food coping strategies to cover the severe food shortages they are facing.’
‘Half of all households have reduced the number of meals and more than 30 percent have restricted the consumption of adults to prioritize children. In the seventh year of the crisis, the large majority of the households have depleted their assets and are no longer able to draw on stocks or other reserves leaving them to resort to child labour or have to withdraw their children from school to cope.
‘Continued food insecurity has immediate effects on the population in terms of their next meal but the indirect long term effects on Syrian youth as a result of coping measures is devastating,’ he added.
Al Muraikhi said that ‘hostilities in several governorates, including Al Raqqa, Idlib, rural Damascus, Hama and Daraa have further increased humanitarian needs among civilians with protection threats increasing as winter approaches.,’ adding that the burden of ‘protracted besiegement has continued to contribute to acute needs among hundreds of thousands of civilians living in besieged areas.’
‘Access to such areas remains minimal, contravening the obligations of armed actors to facilitate rapid, safe, unhindered, unconditional and sustained access to people in need. Although humanitarian partners continue to prioritize assistance to people facing the most severe needs, I urge all of you to use your influence to ease restrictions as access is fundamental in enabling the unimpeded provision of principled humanitarian assistance to people in need,’ Al Muraikhi said.
Regarding the requirements of donor countries to guide their assistance to a specific region or a particular group, Dr. Al Muraikhi stressed that there are no requirements but some countries have an interest in education and other interested in health and the UN provides the necessary facilities for these countries to provide what they see within the limits of the plans for the Syrian inside and for the displaced and refugees in neighbouring countries, according to the location, quality and needs in accordance with the plan, denying that this focus has caused some countries to refrain from implementing their commitments.
The UN Secretary-General's envoy for humanitarian affairs pointed to the existence of plans have been put in advance for reconstruction in Syria immediately after reaching a peaceful solution to the crisis and there is a full study of the needs required by the reconstruction process, especially with the talk of the return of refugees in neighboring countries to safe places inside Syria.
Rashid Khalikov, the assistant secretary-general of the UN for humanitarian partnerships with the Middle East and Central Asia, praised the role of the State of Qatar and its continued and sustained contributions to support Syria and in the field of humanitarian assistance in general.
He expressed the hope that the ceasefire between the conflicting parties in Syria and the return of refugees in neighbouring countries to their country and start the reconstruction process as well as the fulfilment of major donors to all their pledges to ensure the arrival of aid to the needy there, pointing out that there are great challenges facing the UN to ensure the arrival of aid, the most important of which is the ongoing and ongoing war for nearly seven years.
The UN official added that since the outbreak of the crisis in Syria and the whole world is in solidarity with them and pledges of aid and the UN launches appeals and humanitarian response line initiatives, but the needs are large and increasing with the continuation of difficult conditions and failure to meet the full pledges, hoping that this meeting will produce tangible results contribute to alleviate the suffering of the affected Syrians.
Ziad Faisal Al Mishaan, member of the Department of International Organizations in the Kuwaiti Ministry of Foreign Affairs, praised the role of the State of Qatar in continuing to host this meeting and its tangible efforts in raising the efficiency of humanitarian action, which reflects the deep understanding of the GCC countries for the cruelty of the human suffering of the Syrian brethren and their careful awareness of the magnitude of the heavy challenges that are undermining the capacities and resources of donor countries and branches out the bloody conflicts in the region that left millions dead and displaced.
Al Mashaan reviewed the role of Kuwait in hosting the first nine editions of this meeting and presiding over the Brussels conference to support the future of Syria and the neighboring region in April, where it pledged $300 million annually from 2016 in health, education and service projects to the international agencies that are active in Syria and neighboring countries.
Kuwaiti charities also pledged $46 million to the consultative meeting on the Syrian crisis held in Doha last April, stressing that Kuwait has fulfilled all its obligations. In addition to providing nearly $30 million to international organizations and agencies operating in Syria and neighboring countries, as well as Kuwaiti charities pledged $46 million to the consultative meeting on the Syrian crisis held in Doha last April, stressing that Kuwait has fulfilled all its obligations.
He expressed the hope that all donor countries will follow his country's example in honouring the pledges, especially those announced at the London and Brussels conferences of donors, and that everyone will make humanitarian efforts to alleviate the suffering of those affected and that this meeting will produce the desired results that will alleviate the suffering of those affected by the brotherly Syrian people. (QNA)
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