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Estonia Helping to Improve Situation of Syrian Refugees in Jordan

22.01.2013

Nr 15-E

Through the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Estonia is supporting Syrian refugees in Jordan, where the situation grows more complicated each day. “In Jordan’s largest refugee camp, located in Zaatari, there are already 60 000 people, most of whom are women and children,” said Foreign Minister Urmas Paet.

The foreign minister noted that the refugees who have sought refuge in the Zaatari camp must every day cope with very poor conditions. “People lack food and water, and they have only unheated tents to protect them from the wind and rain,” said Paet, who visited the Zaatari refugee camp at the beginning of January.

Foreign Minister Paet said that within the next six months the UN and its partners need to support victims of the Syria crisis with over 1.5 billion dollars. “If the Syrian conflict continues and armed activity intensifies, we can expect the number of refugees in Jordan and Syria’s other neighbouring countries to grow even greater. Therefore the international community must continue to support Syrian refugees as well as the countries that have put forth great effort to welcome refugees,” emphasised the foreign minister. At the end of January an international aid conference about helping Syrian refugees led by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon will be held in Kuwait.

Paet said that there are already more than 198 000 Syrian refugees in Jordan. In addition to the refugees in Jordan, there are also 215 000Syrian refugees in Lebanon, 156 000 in Turkey, and 74 000 in Iraq. Four million people have been affected by the crisis; the number of internally displaced persons in Syria has risen to two million and nearly 60 000 are dead. “If the violence in not stopped, the number of Syrian refugees in Syria’s neighbouring countries could reach 1.1 million by this summer,” noted the foreign minister.

The Foreign Ministry is supporting Syrian refugees in Jordan with 100 000 euros donated through the UN High Commissioner for Refugees’ Office (UNHCR). In addition to the new donation, Estonia has already supported Syrian refugees in Jordan with 50 000 euros donated through the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). Estonia has also supported Syrian refugees in Turkey with 70 000 euros through the Red Cross Federation, the UN Emergency Response Fund for Syria with 50 000 euros, and the humanitarian aid operations of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Syria with 50 000 euros.

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