Syria humanitarian response
The Syria conflict remains one of the largest humanitarian and security crises facing the world today. As at March 2021, the UN estimates 13 million people in Syria were in need of humanitarian assistance, including 4.7 million children. Over half the population has been forced from their homes; and almost 6 million people have fled the violence in Syria to neighbouring countries, including Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt.
The COVID-19 outbreak has compounded the already significant humanitarian, economic and governance challenges across the Middle East. This is particularly the case in Lebanon and Jordan, which host large numbers of Syrian refugees. With 93 per cent of Syrian refugees residing within host communities in urban areas, local resources, infrastructure and services are already under severe strain.
Australia has committed $492.2 million to the Syria response since 2011, including a $249 million multi-year package. The package included humanitarian assistance for Syria and its neighbours, as well as longer-term resilience support for Jordan and Lebanon focused on improving education and livelihoods opportunities for refugees and their host communities.
Australia's humanitarian assistance in response to the Syria crisis has been delivered through UN agencies, international humanitarian organisations and Australian NGOs to reach people in need across the region. Our delivery partners have pivoted in response to the COVID-19 outbreak and now support the health security and stability pillars of our COVID-19 Strategy Partnerships for Recovery.