Two Million Refugees Have Fled Syria; Dire Humanitarian Crisis Continues Unabated
Francine Uenuma 202.640.6810 (O), 202.450.9153 (M)
WESTPORT, Conn. (September 3, 2013) – Two million Syrians – including more than one million children – have fled the country as the violence drags into a third year. In neighboring countries, the number of refugees has risen sharply this year and shows no signs of abating.
As discussions over military intervention in Syria continue, we must not lose sight of the fact that this is one of the worst humanitarian crises of our generation.
An estimated 6.8 million people - including more than three million children - need urgent assistance. Families, who have been forced to flee their homes, are struggling to find shelter in makeshift camps or half-ruined buildings. Medicine, food and water are running out. Hospitals have been bombed, schools are closed and children have reported that the shelling is constant and terrifying.
We have already taken steps to prepare for a major increase in refugee numbers across the region – which may occur if a military intervention takes place – and we are getting supplies and additional staff ready.
Whatever course of action is agreed over the next few days over the alleged use of chemical weapons, the international community must not avert its gaze from the humanitarian catastrophe.
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