July 14, 2020

Yemen, Syria and Venezuela, humanitarian priorities for the UN in 2020

Yemen, South Sudan or the Syrians and Venezuelans inside and outside their country will focus some of the United Nations priority assistance programs in 2020, for which they will ask the international community for 29,000 million dollars, according to the call made today by the organization

UN Under Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Aid, Mark Lowcock, presented in Geneva the list of priority needs to be financed next year, for a slightly lower amount than in 2018 and that will attempt to serve 109 million people.


Venezuela occupies a prominent place with a petition of 750 million dollars to help citizens within that country (more than triple what was requested this year) and another 1,350 million for the displaced and refugees, especially in neighboring nations, which almost doubles the 2019 game.

"In Venezuela, the profound economic crisis has led to a reduction in the income of many families and a sharp deterioration of services such as health services, which has led many Venezuelans to leave their country," Lowcock recalled at a press conference.

The 50 million dollars collected in 2019 to help Venezuelans within their country "have served to immunize 8.5 million people against deadly diseases, administer antiretrovirals to thousands and assist those affected by malnutrition, but the needs exceed the resources, "he admitted.

According to the figures provided by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs led by Lowcock, the assistance plan for Venezuela has been the one that has had the most financing difficulties in 2019, since for now only 25 percent of the requested funds.

The office also highlights the importance of financing assistance plans for the Venezuelan exodus (with more than 4.5 million people who have left the country since 2014), as neighboring nations "still rely heavily on emergency humanitarian aid for attend basic needs ".

The UN seeks to serve six million Venezuelans, 2.5 million outside and 3.5 million within their country, although he admits that there are about 11 million who would need humanitarian aid.


However, it is Syria, which is now close to nine years of civil war, the country for which the United Nations will request greater assistance, of 3,300 million dollars for the interior of the country and 5,200 million for Syrian refugees and their communities of reception in countries like Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan or Iraq.

"The conflict continues to generate the worst current refugee crisis, with 5.6 million in neighboring countries, to which 6 million internally displaced persons must be added within Syria," said Lowcock.

Another country at war, Yemen, will be a priority for the humanitarian programs of the various UN agencies, for which $ 3.2 billion will be requested in order to address "the worst current humanitarian crisis", in the words of the United Nations coordinator for emergencies.

"Some 24 million people need help, 80 percent of the population of Yemen, so we will continue there the largest humanitarian operation despite the challenges we face in that territory," he said.


South Sudan, for whose relief operations $ 2.5 billion will be requested, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (2.4 billion both within the country and for refugees in others on the African continent) complete the list of major destinations, although the countries of the list exceed twenty.

Among the 29,000 million dollars requested, there are 4,200 million required by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) to reach 59 million children, with objectives such as treating 5.1 million children with severe malnutrition or vaccinating against measles at 8.5 million.

Not all of these calls to "invest in humanity", as defined by the United Nations, are answered, and in the absence of a month by the end of 2019 only 55 percent of the money requested by the coordination office for this year has been received , which Lowcock acknowledged forces to give up certain goals.

The humanitarian coordinator also wanted to point out that this year there has been a worrying increase in attacks on humanitarian workers in the world, for example in health facilities, with almost 800 in the first nine months (double that in 2018) in which 171 people died .

(tagsToTranslate) Yemen (t) Syria (t) Venezuela (t) humanitarian (t) UN

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