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Syrians need more than financial pledges, says Christian Aid

4 February 2016, Christian Aid welcomes the commitments that were made today by the UK, Germany, France and others to increase humanitarian support for Syrians and the region.  However the charity added that real relief will only happen when the bombs stop.

Frances Guy, Christian Aid’s Head of Middle East Region said: “For  Syrian refugees who rely on food baskets and vouchers from the World Food Programme it will be a relief to know that Germany has already pledged to fund half of the money that is needed for these distributions for this year.

“It will be a relief to Syrian parents who are living in Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey to know that their children should now have the opportunity to be in education.  Some Syrians in those countries can now hope that they may be able to work legally and earn a living which will support their families. We must now work with these countries to ensure that these pledges are acted upon. 

“However, for those who live under the daily threat of bombardment from all sides inside Syria and for those Syrians who are besieged and relying on very infrequent aid distributions, there will be no relief.
“As we heard from Syrian colleagues over the past two days, unless political will to end the violence inside Syria is put into action, the numbers of the dead will rise as will the numbers seeking refuge in the neighbouring countries and in Europe. 

“More food and blankets will not stop the bombs. The plea from the International Red Cross should be answered:  Find a political solution, urgently. Lift all sieges immediately. Start putting Syrians first.”

In Lebanon and Iraq, Christian Aid partners continue to support Syrian refugee communities, as well as working with ACT Alliance agencies to support humanitarian efforts taking place in Greece and Serbia. For more info on Christian Aids work in the region, please visit www.christian-aid.org/Syria

If you would like further information or to arrange an interview please contact Jo Rogers on jrogers@christian_aid.org and on 07969 083 371 

Notes to Editors:
1. Christian Aid works in some of the world's poorest communities in around 40 countries at any one time. We act where there is great need, regardless of religion, helping people to live a full life, free from poverty. We provide urgent, practical and effective assistance in tackling the root causes of poverty as well as its effects.
2. Christian Aid’s core belief is that the world can and must be changed so that poverty is ended: this is what we stand for. Everything we do is about ending poverty and injustice: swiftly, effectively, sustainably. Our strategy document Partnership for Change www.christianaid.org.uk/images/partnership-for-change-summary.pdf explains how we set about this task.
3. Christian Aid is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of more than 130 churches and church-related organisations that work together in humanitarian assistance, advocacy and development. Further details at http://actalliance.org
4. Follow Christian Aid's newswire on Twitter: http://twitter.com/caid_newswire
5. For more information about the work of Christian Aid, visit http://www.christianaid.org.uk

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