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Thursday, May 13, 2021

Qatari charities pledge more funds to help injured Syrian refugees

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PSS Team with one of the wounded

Representatives of four Qatari charities will visit Jordan over the weekend to announce an extension of their aid program to help injured Syrian refugees there.

The leaders of the Qatar Red Crescent (QRC), the Sheikh Thani Bin Abdullah Foundation for Humanitarian Services (RAF), the Organization of Islamic Call and Qatar Charity will also use their visit to announce a new total budget for their Syria fund, which launched in November 2013.

So far, the fund – which is managed by the QRC – has spent QR4 million treating 273 wounded Syrians, 29 percent of whom were in a critical condition.

Although the four charities have not disclosed a figure for their new budget, it will likely be significantly higher than the organizations’ current spend.

Crisis grows

The third anniversary of the Syrian civil war was marked earlier this month. Some 100,000 people inside Syria have died during the conflict, and more than 2.5 million have been left homeless.

Qatar has strongly spoken out against President Bashar Al Assad’s regime, particularly zeroing in on the plight of the Syrian people.

Addressing the 25th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva yesterday, Qatar’s permanent representative to the office Faisal Bin Abdullah Al Henzab said:

“It has been clear before the entire world that the Syrian regime is the sole party practicing terrorism against the innocent Syrians, committing the most heinous crimes and massacres, using the starvation policies to kneel down the Syrian people and destroying Syria through the use of all the internationally prohibited chemical and heavy weapons along with the terroristic bomb barrels.”

Emergency aid

In Jordan, contributions have thus far gone to hospitals that treat wounded Syrians who have fled across the border to escape escalating violence.

These include the Shami Center for Eye Treatment, and the Dhaleel Hospital for the treatment of kidney patients. The fund is also helping to treat Syrian refugees with renal failure at the Zaatari refugee camp.

Qatar’s donations have not been limited to helping refugees in Jordan. Last December, QRC sent $20 million worth of emergency aid, including stoves, blankets, mattresses and fuel for heating to Syrian refugees struggling to survive the freezing winter in Lebanon.

These recent donations go some way to answer criticism leveled at Qatar  – and several other Gulf states – by the UK’s Independent newspaper, which alleged that as of May 1st last year, Qatar had only delivered $2.7 million of the $100 million in aid it had pledged to Syria during a January summit in Kuwait.

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