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Suffering in Syria is at its highest level since crisis began: UN

Internally displaced Syrians sit atop their belongings in the back of a truck at a camp, before being transported to a new housing complex in the opposition-held area of Bizaah, northern Aleppo governorate (AFP/File)
Internally displaced Syrians sit atop their belongings in the back of a truck at a camp, before being transported to a new housing complex in the opposition-held area of Bizaah, northern Aleppo governorate (AFP/File)
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25 Feb 2022 01:02:47 GMT9
25 Feb 2022 01:02:47 GMT9

BEIRUT: A record number of people in Syria are in need of humanitarian assistance more than a decade into a devastating civil war, the UN said.

At least 14.6 million people in Syria are in need of humanitarian aid, up from 13.4 million last year, the UN’s humanitarian agency OCHA said in a report.

“Suffering in Syria is at its highest level since the crisis began,” said the UN deputy regional humanitarian coordi- nator for the Syria conflict, Mark Cutts.

“The UN and its partners are reaching 7 million people every month, but more support is required,” he said in a post on Twitter.

The war in Syria is estimated to have killed nearly half a million people and displaced millions more since it began with a brutal crackdown on anti-government protests in 2011.

The country is also grappling with an economic crisis compounded by Western sanctions, the COVID-19 pandemic and a sharp fall in the value of the Syrian pound.

Over three quarters of house- holds — 76 percent — are unable to meet their most basic needs, an increase of 10 percent from last year, OCHA said.

Syria’s internally displaced population makes up 37 percent of the people requiring humanitarian assistance, the report said.

People who have never been displaced or who returned to their place of origin before January 2021, are also increasingly unable to meet basic needs, OCHA said, calling it an “indication” of the growing scale of the crisis.

In 2021, 9.2 million vulnerable residents were estimated to be in need, according to OCHA.

AFP

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