U.K. Development Secretary Asks International Community To Fulfill Syrian Aid Commitments

“Justine Greening, the U.K. international development secretary, has urged countries to fulfill their aid commitments to Syria as the country faces a humanitarian ‘crisis of catastrophic proportions,'” The Guardian reports. “[W]e’re all starting to take a longer-term view … at some point, we want to see Syria being rebuilt. We are looking at priorities and what will be a long-term commitment,” Greening said, according to the newspaper, which notes the U.K. “has committed £348 million [$544 million] in humanitarian aid to Syria, of which £170 million [$265.7 million] has already been allocated.” The U.N. in June “launched the largest emergency appeal in its history — $5.2 billion (£3.2 billion),” warning that 10 million Syrians will need humanitarian assistance by the end of the year, as the crisis enters its third year, The Guardian notes. “Greening voiced concern about the reported mistreatment of Syrians inside the country and refugees outside,” the newspaper writes, adding, “Sexual abuse of women and children has ‘been a concern and is always going to be in a situation where 70 percent of refugees are women and children,’ she said. ‘I think we don’t focus enough attention on vulnerable groups, especially women and girls'” (Tran/Bax, 8/15).