EU to Support Syrian Refugees in Turkey With Additional 3B Euros

EU official Avramopoulos says Europe and Turkey must work together for refugees and their own benefit, Alsouria Net reports

The European Union's Commission proposed granting an additional 3 billion euros ($3.72 billion) to support Syrian refugees in Turkey, who number about 3 million people, half of them children.

This news was delivered by the European Union commissioner for migration, home affairs and citizenship, Dimitris Avramopoulos, during a press conference he held in Brussels on financial support pledged by the Commission to support Syrian refugees in Turkey.

Avramopoulos said that contracts had begun to be drawn up since the end of last year around the first part of the 3 billion euros which the EU has vowed to offer to support Syrian refugees in Turkey.

He added: “The Union is dealing appropriately with its commitments, and the Commission decided today to mobilize the second package formed for the support of Syrian refugees in Turkey which is valued at 3 billion euros.”

He said that the first billion of the package would be provided by the EU budget while the other 2 billion would be from member nations.

The European official noted that financial support which the EU has offered has provided 500,000 Syrian children with education and a monthly stipend for 1.2 million refugees in Turkey.

He said that the refugee agreement between the EU and Turkey had produced positive results.

He added: “The agreement must continue between the two sides. There is progress in relationships between the two sides, and this is in our mutual interests.”

For its part, the European Commission said in a statement that it had proposed mobilizing another 3 billion euros as an additional source of support for Syrian refugees in Turkey.

The EU pledged to put together a package of 3 billion euros to support Syrian refugees in Turkey until the end of 2017. This came during the Turkish-European summit which was held on Nov. 29, 2015.

During the second summit which was held on March 18 of the following year, it decided to offer an additional package of 3 billion euros until the end of 2018 when the first package ended.

It also decided to spend the two packages on implementing projects to meet the needs of Syrian refugees in Turkey, including health, education, infrastructure, food and other needs.

Turkey has repeatedly said that the financial aid pledged by the European United has not been disbursed quickly enough.

Turkey is the biggest host of Syrian refugees in the world, with more than 3.5 million refugees, half of them children, and Turkey has spent about $30 billion to meet their needs. 

This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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