30 Mar 2015
The head of a Turkish relief organization said he was “profoundly grateful” for Kuwait’s consistent support of Syrian refugees, as it prepares to host a third round of global aid-pledging talks in three years. Ahead of Kuwait III, due on March 31, he said His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah’s UN Humanitarian Leader and Kuwait’s UN Humanitarian Centre awards were fully justified due to efforts in Syria, Africa and Asia. Kuwait is well-known for its humanitarian initiatives and is one of the few nations that stood alongside the Syrian people in their plight, said the head of Turkey’s Foundation for Human Rights and Freedoms and Humanitarian Relief (IHH) Fehmi Bulent Yildirim. It has taken huge steps in assuring the reach of support to refugees. The head of the Istanbul-based IHH, which was behind the aid flotilla which had attempted to breach the Israeli siege on Gaza, praised humanitarian coordination between Turkey and Kuwait as being one of the best forms of this globally. The two together have provided thousands of tonnes of urgent food assistance, repaired schools and “provided healthcare to people affected by chemical attacks,” he said. After reaching a few thousands at the time of Kuwait I, Syrian refugees have reached astonishing numbers exceeding 10 million (12 million in precise). Some 12.5 million Syrians have been displaced internally and across Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey, Iraq and Egypt, due to the conflict in their country that has just entered its fifth year. Kuwait I and II in 2013 and 2014 raised collective international pledges from nations and NGOs worth a total USD 3.9 billion – USD 1.5 billion and USD 2.4 billion respectively. Of these pledges, Kuwait donated a collective USD 800 million, including USD 300 million and USD 500 million.