Pledges of 7B euro for people of Türkiye and Syria at International Donors Conference

Pledges worth seven billion euro to help the people of Türkiye and Syria hit by the February earthquakes were made at an International Donors Conference on March 20 convened by the European Commission (EC) and the Swedish Presidency of the Council of the EU.

This had exceeded expectations, EC President Ursula von der Leyen said after the close of the meeting.

“We will continue to work together to support those affected by the earthquakes,” Von der Leyen said.

She said that the EC would support the people of Türkiye with a billion euro for reconstruction, and would provide 108 million euro for humanitarian aid and early recovery in Syria.

The World Health Organisation has qualified the earthquakes in Türkiye and Syria as the worst natural disaster to hit the region in over a century, Von der Leyen said.

The March 20 conference “marks just the beginning,” she said.

“We will host a Donors’ Conference in Brussels just for the people of Syria on June 14,” Von der Leyen said.

“We will make sure that the pledges are fully delivered and on time. And we will make sure that our investment has the strongest impact on the ground – in full transparency and accountability.”

Speaking at the opening of the conference, Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson said that the challenge to rebuild cannot be exaggerated.

“The affected area in Türkiye and Syria equals the countries of Belgium and the Netherlands together. Whole cities and societies need to be reconstructed. And the survivors will need help to return to a normal life.

“We still do not have precise figures on all of the physical destruction but we’re talking about large sums. The total economic impact will be devastating and long-term,” Kristersson said.

(Photo: EC Audiovisual Service)

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