On 30 June 2020, the UN raised a total of $7.7 billion in humanitarian aid for Syria at the virtual UN donor conference on Syria in Brussels, Belgium.
Syria has been devastated by more than nine years of war that has displaced half of the country’s population. The war in Syria has killed more than 400,000 people and sparked a refugee exodus to neighbouring countries and Europe.
The UN agencies have sought to raise $10bn to support Syria, reaching a success of almost reaching their originally set goal for this year. Given the economic shock of Covid-19 on many governments and shortfalls in other aid appeals, especially in Yemen, the Brussels IV Conference on Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region has performed better than expected.
“We recognize that the circumstances are very unusual, it is a difficult moment in every country to find the resources necessary to relieve the suffering of the Syrian people,” UN aid chief Mark Lowcock said after the virtual donor conference by some 60 governments and non-official agencies.
Germany offered 1.58 billion euros ($1.78 billion), which the biggest country donation so far. Germany is the first recipient countries of Syrian refugees in Europe and is keen to see an end to the conflict in Syria.
German Development Minister Gerd Muller said “We finally need a political solution to the conflict”.
The United Nations, which last year raised $7 billion in humanitarian air for Syria, said in 2020, it needs $3.8 billion for aid inside Syria where 11 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance and protection, with more than 9.3 million of them lacking adequate or enough food.
Another $6.04 billion is sought to help the 6.6 million Syrians who have fled, in what is the world’s biggest refugee crisis in the 21stcentury.
The European Union’s foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, said “This conference shows that we are not forgetting the ongoing conflict. We are not forgetting the suffering of the Syrian people and we are mobilising international support behind United Nations Security Council resolutions and the United Nations-led process to settle the Syrian conflict.”