Vienna, 11 December 2012 - "The continued escalation of the conflict aggravates the distress of large parts of the Syrian people. Austria is responding by making an additional 800,000 euros available from the Foreign Disaster Relief Fund increasing its humanitarian aid for Syria to 3.73 million euros in total", Vice-Chancellor and Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger said after the session of the Ministerial Council on 11 December 2012.
650,000 euros will be allocated to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to support internally displaced people with necessary things such as ovens, blankets and winterproof shelter now that winter is closing in.
Spindelegger said that the protection of the civil society also requires fighting against impunity for blatant violations of human rights committed daily in Syria. 150,000 euros will therefore be dedicated to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to support the work of the International Commission of Inquiry of the Human Rights Council in the field of documenting human rights violations.
The figures published by the United Nations underline the dramatic situation of the country ravaged by the armed conflict: 2.5 million people are in need of humanitarian aid. More than 1.4 million children and young people are affected. 1.2 million people had to leave their homes. Nearly 500,000 people fled to neighbouring countries.
Federal Ministry for European and International AffairsPress Department Tel.: ++43 (0) 50 1150-3320Fax: ++43 (0) 50 1159-213 mailto:abti3(at)bmeia.gv.at