Saturday, August 20

Extra £30m In UK Aid For Syrian Refugees



Britain is to spend another £30m on shelter, warm clothes, hot food and medical supplies for 27,000 children and babies who have fled fighting in Syria.

The aid has been announced by the International Development Secretary, Justine Greening, who is attending the World Economic Forum in Davos with David Cameron.

The special help for the most vulnerable victims of the Syrian civil war as winter bites in Europe comes as the Prime Minister pleads with world leaders to provide more support for the refugees.

The latest aid is for children who have fled to the Balkans, Greece, and Italy and the UK’s support will provide jackets, hats, scarves, boots and food to help keep them warm this winter.

Announcing the funding, Ms Greening said: “As the humanitarian crisis in Syria continues, we will make sure we help refugees who have lost everything and desperately need our support.

“We are helping people inside Syria, enabling millions to stay in neighbouring countries, and for those who have made the perilous journey to Europe, we are stepping up our support to ensure they can cope with worsening weather conditions.

“Many children and their families have been left with nothing but the clothes on their back and are in desperate need of basic essentials.

“As the coldest months of winter are upon us, warm clothes, hot water and warm blankets will help protect the most vulnerable.”

The UK’s £30m will be divided into:

:: £2.75m to UNICEF

:: £11m funding to the Start Fund

:: £9.75m to the UNHCR’s Special Mediterranean Initiative

:: £3m to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)

:: £3.5m worth of essential equipment

The cash for UNICEF will provide blankets for babies, winter shoes and boots and socks, winter jackets, winter hats, scarf and gloves, and food.

The Start Fund aid will be spent on transport from arrival points to accommodation to reduce exposure to the cold, as well as warm clothes and blankets, hot meals and insulated pipes at water stations to ensure drinking water keeps flowing.

There will also be money for portable buildings, tents, sleeping materials to shelter people from the cold weather, medicines and first aid support.

The £3.5m for essential equipment will be spent on 1,700 tents, 18,000 sleeping mats, 178,000 blankets, and items such as a rough terrain forklift truck to move supplies around more easily.

The Government says the International Development Secretary’s announcement brings the UK’s total support for refugees and migrants during the Mediterranean migration crisis to nearly £55m.

While he is in Davos, Mr Cameron will co-host talks with Queen Rania of Jordan at which he will urge European leaders to relax EU trade rules with Jordan as part of a drive to increase support for Syrian refugees.

Ahead of a London conference on Syria next month, Mr Cameron wants to come up with measures to spur economic growth and enable hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees across the region find work.