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With the Participation of Syria, Second Global Refugee Forum Kicks off in Geneva

Minister Sabbagh called for more early recovery projects because of their importance in improving the humanitarian situation, according to al-Watan.

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Emigrants Bassam Sabbagh called for increasing early recovery projects in quantity and quality because of their importance in improving the humanitarian situation in a tangible and sustainable manner, and supporting the efforts of the Syrian government in the field of the return of Syrian refugees to their homeland. During his meeting on Wednesday with the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Martin Griffiths, on the sidelines of the Second Global Refugee Forum held in Geneva, Switzerland, Sabbagh pointed to the acute lack of funding for the humanitarian response plan. He stressed the need to mobilize the necessary financial resources to meet the growing needs of Syrians and reiterated the importance of enhancing early recovery projects for their positive impact on the humanitarian situation and in supporting the Syrian government’s efforts in facilitating the return of refugees to their homeland.

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According to a statement obtained by Al-Watan, aspects of cooperation between the Syrian government and the United Nations in the field of humanitarian work were reviewed, and the facilities were granted by Syria to the United Nations to deliver aid to Syrian civilians in need. For his part, Griffiths expressed his appreciation for the facilities provided by the Syrian government to the United Nations to enable it to carry out its mandate, especially the extension of the permission granted to it to enter humanitarian aid through the Bab al-Salama and al-Rai border crossings. He stressed OCHA’s keenness to continue coordination and cooperation with the Syrian government to improve the humanitarian situation. Regarding the decline in the amount of funding needed for humanitarian work in Syria, Griffiths stressed that he continues to seek additional sources of funding, including for early recovery projects.

The meeting was attended by the Permanent Representative of Syria to the United Nations Office in Geneva, Ambassador Haider Ali Ahmed, the Director of the Department of International Organizations and Conferences at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Emigrants, Qusai al-Dahhak, and Osama Ali from the Permanent Mission in Geneva. With the participation of Syria, the Second Global Refugee Forum kicked off on Wednesday morning in Geneva, Switzerland, and will continue until the 15th of this month, when Sabbagh heads the Syrian delegation.

In his opening address to the forum, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi noted that there are 114 million refugees and internally displaced people around the world. He mentioned that almost every refugee aspires to return home and warned of a major humanitarian catastrophe unfolding in the Gaza Strip. Grandi added that the Security Council’s inability in this regard leads us to expect more civilian deaths and suffering. He reiterated the UN Secretary-General’s call for an immediate and sustainable humanitarian ceasefire. The Forum, held every four years, is the largest international gathering on refugees and aims to promote the implementation of the goals of the Global Compact on Refugees, including supporting countries of origin to facilitate the return of refugees.


This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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