The KRG has provided 90 % of the humanitarian aid to Syrian refugees
High-ranking KRG official strongly criticizes the UN and the international community for not helping refugees in Kurdistan as they do in other countries.
An official from the Kurdistan Regional Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs has strongly criticized the UN and the international community for not helping Syrian refuges in Kurdistan as they do in other countries such as Jordan and Lebanon.
Dindar Zebari, Deputy to the head of the Department of Foreign Affairs, told the Kurdish Globe that almost 90 % of the humanitarian aid provided to Syrian refugees has been provided by the local government.
“The number of Syrian refugees in the Kurdistan Region is now in the region of 250, 000, and their numbers are increasing constantly,” Zebari said.
He further stated that the refugees have been distributed over the three provinces of Kurdistan. He also remarked that the UN and other international agencies should not differentiate between refugee camps in Kurdistan and other countries, and asked them to help in Kurdistan in the same way they help in other areas.
Zebari said the Iraqi federal government and the international community should draw up a special plan for relocating the refugees to new facilities before the onset of winter, which is harsh in Kurdistan. He added that there are many students within the refugees who need basic aid with their studies.
Bewar Rasheed, a 16year-old Syrian Kurdish refugee, was a high school student back in Syria. He says, “I can’t study here because everything is different. The whole system is different, and I’m not at all clear about my future. Hopefully, that won’t last forever.” Raseed hopes the KRG and the UN will open high schools in areas near the camps, so the refugees will not have to go without education.
Since the conflict erupted in the country, more two million Syrians have taken refuge in neighboring countries including Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq including the Kurdistan Region, and Egypt. That number is expected to increase to more than three million by the end of the year.
Regarding the open border with Syria, Zebari stated that the border is open now and has yet to be closed. “It should be borne in mind that the border crossing is unofficial; it is just for sending humanitarian aid to the people in Syria.”
The KRG has also helped the refugees financially, but it cannot satisfy all the needs in the newly-founded camps because of the increasing number of Syrian refugees in the Region.
The KRG confirmed that it needs support in this regard from the Iraqi government, the UN and the international community.
A Syrian girl child stands in front of her tent in a refugee camp in Erbil, capital of the autonomous Kurdistan Region.