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UNHCR: 16.7 million Syrians are in need of humanitarian assistance

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) confirmed that the number of people in need of aid across Syria has climbed to 16.7 million people since the end of 2023, the highest number since 2011.

UNHCR said in its report: “The country indulged into more despair during 2023 as it was hit by earthquakes on 6 and 20 February, killing 5900 people and injuring 12800 others.”

The earthquakes caused additional displacement and damage to infrastructure, which has been affected by the conflict during the previous years, so families lost their source of income which increased millions of people’s vulnerabilities to meet their basic needs.

The report pointed out that the status of Gaza enclave worsened the humanitarian, security, and political situation in Syria.

The report stressed that the ongoing conflict, the economic turmoil, and natural disasters led to poverty and malnutrition outbreak and aid dependency, which its cost increased, because of severe inflation.

Insecurity in some parts of the country also resulted in the deaths of 454 civilians, including women and children, between January and October 2023, the exodus of entire communities, the destruction of civilian infrastructure, and the obstruction of humanitarian access.

About 90 percent of Syria’s population lives in poverty, with about 12.9 million people are food insecure, and the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance at the end of 2023 was estimated at 16.7 million people, the highest number since 2011, an increase of 1.4 million of people in need compared to 2022.

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