Turkey spent $2.5 billion amid Syrian refugee crisis - minister

Photo: Turkey spent $2.5 billion amid Syrian refugee crisis - minister / Arab World

Turkey has spent $2.5 billion for Syrian refugees while the total of international support for the Turkish government stands at $175 million, Development Minister Cevdet Yilmaz said Wednesday in his remarks at a donor's summit for Syria held in Kuwait Anadolu News Agency reported.

Turkey hosts more than 700 thousand refugees within its borders. More than 200 thousand of them are sheltered in tent cities.

Kuwait hosted delegations from 69 countries and 25 NGOs which met to raise a fund of $6.5 billion dollars, the largest appeal made for Syrian crisis since it began in 2011.

In the first donation summit in January last year, a total sum of $1.5 billion dollars was donated in humanitarian aid to Syria, accounting for 69% of the target.

Yilmaz said 60 thousand more Syrians died since January 2013 and the need for humanitarian relief was only beginning to emerge last year. He said the number of the displaced in the war-torn country tripled during the same period.

Yilmaz said Turkey supports the upcoming international conference in Geneva in search of a political solution to the crisis.

The Turkish minister urged for a lasting solution in Syria, adding that Turkey would maintain its "open door" policy for Syrians.

Syria has been in the throes of conflict since March 2011, when a peaceful uprising against the regime of Bashar al-Assad turned into a civil war following a violent government crackdown.

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