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Another tragic milestone as Syrian refugees in Lebanon reach one million

European Commission - STATEMENT/14/103   03/04/2014

Other available languages: AR

European Commission

Statement

Brussels, 3 April 2014

Another tragic milestone as Syrian refugees in Lebanon reach one million

Statement by Kristalina Georgieva Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response on learning that the number of registered Syrian refugees in Lebanon has now reached 1 million.

"The Syria crisis has produced another tragic milestone with the number of refugees now sheltering in Lebanon passing the one million mark. The generosity of Lebanon by keeping its borders open is taking a huge toll on the security of the country as well as creating a huge burden on its people who are often sharing the hardships of their guests.

It is difficult to imagine in human terms the suffering and deprivation of one million men, women and children unless we think in individual terms. I have seen the anguish and misery of many refugee families on my visits to the region and I know that our assistance is vital. What pains me most is the plight of the children and in Lebanon they make up over half of refugees.

Since the start of this conflict, the EU together with its Member States has contributed massively in the region with more than €2.6 billion mobilised to respond to humanitarian and longer term needs. This figure includes €615 million from the Commission's humanitarian aid budget, of which more than 26% has been provided to Lebanon. Despite this funding, it is clear that the only sustainable solution for the millions affected by the crisis is a political one.

I appeal to the international community to do everything possible to bring an end to this terrible war. In the meantime, Europe will continue to show its solidarity with the most vulnerable, whose only wish is for peace and security so that they can return home and rebuild their lives".

For more information

The European Commission's humanitarian aid and civil protection:

http://ec.europa.eu/echo/index_en.htm

& in Arabic: http://echo-arabic.eu

Commissioner Georgieva's website:

http://ec.europa.eu/commission_2010-2014/georgieva/index_en.htm

Contacts :

David Sharrock (+32 2 296 89 09)

Irina Novakova (+32 2 295 75 17)

For the public: Europe Direct by phone 00 800 6 7 8 9 10 11 or by e-mail


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