The circumstances for those living in the earthquake-stricken regions of Turkey and Syria remain precarious six weeks after the devastating events. The earthquakes in Turkey and Syria in early February claimed over 50,000 lives and displaced more than 3 million people.
The humanitarian situation in Syria was already dire before the earthquakes occurred, and has since deteriorated further. The extensive destruction in the affected areas of Turkey has exacerbated the situation. "We are committed to helping the people in both countries and in all affected regions," said Bessler at the donors' conference in Brussels.
In the immediate aftermath of the earthquakes on 6 February 2023, the Swiss government mobilised Swiss Rescue and subsequently dispatched an emergency response team comprised of specialists from the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit to Turkey. Switzerland has supported the Syrian population through financial contributions to multilateral and bilateral partner organisations. Furthermore, a total of 700 winter-resistant family tents have been distributed to communities in both affected countries.
Long-term commitment in response to Syrian crisis
By allocating additional funds, Switzerland is reinforcing its commitment to sustaining its aid efforts in Syria and the surrounding region. Since the onset of the Syrian crisis in 2011, Switzerland has provided over CHF 610 million in aid to the affected populations in Syria and the region. Switzerland also works to promote peace, ensure adherence to international law, and combat impunity.
The international donors' conference in Brussels was organised by the EU and Sweden, which currently holds the presidency of the Council of the EU.
Humanitarian aid to Turkey and Syria
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