Humanitarian Groups Join in Appeal to End Syria Crisis
Humanitarian Organizations Join Forces in Appeal to End Syria Crisis
Press Release 21/01/2016
EMBARGOED UNTIL 1300, 21/01/2016
New Zealand humanitarian organizations are adding their voices to an international chorus appealing for an end to the crisis in Syria as it nears its five-year mark in March.
UN agencies along with Aid and Development NGOs around the world, including Tearfund, are co-ordinating in a social media campaign to appeal to those involved in the Syrian conflict, and those who can influence them, to end the suffering.
From 1pm today, humanitarian organizations are posting on social media “end the #Syriacrisis”, and encouraging the public to like, share and retweet the appeal.
The appeal was developed by leading humanitarian and UN agencies* and calls on those with the ability to stop the suffering to take action, including: unimpeded access to humanitarian organizations to bring relief to those inside Syria, ceasefires to allow food and other urgent assistance to be delivered to civilians, a cessation on attacks on civilian infrastructure, and freedom of movement by civilians.
Some 4.6 million Syrians have fled to refugee settlements in neighbouring countries and beyond since the civil war started, and around 13.5 million people inside Syria are currently in need of humanitarian assistance.
Ian McInnes, CEO of Tearfund and Chair of the NGO Disaster Relief Forum, says the crisis in Syria must be resolved, but until it is, humanitarian organizations must be given more access to people in need.
“We’re adding our voice because we’ve been working with our partners in the region to help those affected by the Syria conflict for over three years now, and the number of people affected has only grown. Civilians being cut off from food and other emergency supplies is simply unacceptable. It’s time for this tragedy to stop.”
Tearfund is continuing to work through its local partners in the region, including Lebanon and Iraq, to provide emergency food assistance, winterisation and education to Syrians living in refugee camps.
*UNOCHA, UNICEF, WFP, UNHCR, and WHO.