Turkey, Qatar to ink aid deal for Syrian refugees

Photo: Turkey, Qatar to ink aid deal for Syrian refugees / Turkey

Turkey, Qatar and the United Nations will sign on Tuesday a cooperation protocol to provide winter relief materials to Syrian refugees Anadolu News Agency reported.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said in a written statement that the Disaster and Emergency Relief Agency (AFAD) of Turkey, Qatar Red Crescent (QRC), and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) will sign a cooperation protocol on Tuesday to confirm their cooperation on the provision of emergency winter relief materials to Syrian refugees through funding provided by the State of Qatar.

The statement said the QRC will provide US$10 million for a winterization program that includes 7,000 highly-durable family tents and 315,000 high thermal blankets for those who have fled the fighting in Syria.

President Dr. Fuat Oktay said, "Women and children constitute three quarters of the total number of Syrians who have fled the country. More than 1 million children try to continue life under difficult circumstances. Our only purpose is to help the people that are in need and to assist those in tough situations."

QRC Secretary-General Saleh Muhanadi stressed the importance of cooperation and coordination with the UNHCR, and expressed his deep appreciation for the cooperation from AFAD.

In reference to the increasing number of refugees in the region and the harsh winter conditions, UNHCR Representative Carol Batchelor said, "The UNHCR is very grateful to Qatar for this important and timely humanitarian initiative that will also reach the 700,000 Syrian refugees currently living in Turkey."

"Turkey has consistently and effectively provided Syrian refugees with a high standard of assistance in camps coordinated by AFAD. The UNHCR will continue to support the emergency response of Turkey through the valuable contribution of our donors," she added.

The UNHCR has requested $285 million for Syrian refugees in Turkey under the 2014 Regional Response Plan. As part of the plan, donors have committed $22.5 million in cash and $10 million in kind to the UNHCR.

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