100 days since the earthquakes… the suffering of 6.2 million children in Syria and Turkey

100 days since the earthquakes… the suffering of 6.2 million children in Syria and Turkey
100 days since the earthquakes… the suffering of 6.2 million children in Syria and Turkey

The Executive Director of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Catherine Russell, confirmed that about 6.2 million children in Syria and Turkey are facing harsh conditions as they struggle to rebuild their lives after the devastating earthquakes that struck the two countries in early February.

According to the United Nations Information Center, today, Thursday, the UNICEF official confirmed that about 3.7 million children in Syria and 2.5 million children in Turkey still need continuous humanitarian assistance, 100 days after the earthquakes that left many children without shelter or access. services, including safe water, education and medical care, and increased protection risks for vulnerable children.

The UNICEF statement indicated that families in the areas affected by the earthquakes were weak even before the earthquakes, as poverty rates in the affected Turkish regions were higher than in the rest of the country, while the education of about four million children enrolled in schools, including more than 350, was disrupted. A thousand refugee and immigrant children, warning of the possibility of reversing the progress Turkey has achieved in recent years in these areas.

In Syria, where fighting has been going on for more than 12 years, earthquakes have caused additional damage to schools, health care services and other infrastructure, such as water and sanitation facilities, putting 6.5 million people at high risk of contracting waterborne diseases, including cholera.

UNICEF called on the international community to give priority to achieving an early recovery centered on children, and to ensure that their needs are met within the funding allocations.

“The road to recovery is a long one, and families will need continued support,” said Katherine Russell. “The long-term impacts of the disaster, including skyrocketing food and energy prices, coupled with the loss of livelihoods and access to “Services have pushed hundreds of thousands of children into deeper poverty. These children will remain at a high level of risk of exploitation and abuse unless we prioritize financial assistance and basic services for them and their families as part of an immediate and long-term recovery plan.”

UNICEF urged the allocation of investments to recovery efforts and the establishment of more comprehensive systems for the most vulnerable groups, and said that it has been working tirelessly since the earthquakes occurred to increase its direct assistance to the affected communities, but the UN organization stressed the need to increase support to address the crisis.

It is noteworthy that UNICEF received $78.1 million to implement its immediate response plan to the earthquakes in Syria, which amounted to $172.7 million.. In Turkey, UNICEF still needs more than $85 million out of the $196 million appeal to provide the necessary services to needy children affected by earthquakes.

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