Syrian Kurdish people return to the Syrian town of Kobane, also known as Ain al-Arab, on March 30, 2015
Syrian Kurdish people return to the Syrian town of Kobane, also known as Ain al-Arab, on March 30, 2015 © Yasin Akgul - AFP
Syrian Kurdish people return to the Syrian town of Kobane, also known as Ain al-Arab, on March 30, 2015
AFP
Last updated: March 31, 2015

EU doubles Syria aid pledge to 1.1 billion euros

Banner Icon The European Union announced a pledge of nearly 1.1 billion euros ($1.2 billion) in humanitarian aid for war-torn Syria at a donor conference in Kuwait, double the amount the bloc promised last year.

"The needs are overwhelming and an extraordinary effort is needed by the wider donor community to mobilise significant funding," EU aid commissioner Christos Stylianides said in a statement.

"With our substantial contribution, the European Union -- Commission and the member states -- shoulders its responsibility to alleviate the suffering of the Syrian people."

The money consists of 500 million euros in "humanitarian aid, early recovery and longer-term stabilisation assistance" from the European Commission, the executive branch of the EU, along with further increased pledges from the bloc's 28 countries, the EU said.

The overall pledge is twice that promised at the 2014 Syria donor conference, it added.

Kuwait's emir earlier announced $500 million for the Syrian crisis, which he called the worst in modern history.

UN chief Ban Ki-moon told the conference that the participants needed to raise a total of $8.4 billion: $5.5 billion for refugees and $2.9 billion for people still inside Syria.

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