Addressing the Syrian Humanitarian Crisis

Posted by Anne C. Richard
March 19, 2013
Assistant Secretary Anne C. Richard Participates in Google Hangout

The two-year anniversary of the Syria uprising coincides with another dark milestone: over one million refugees have fled Syria. More troubling, half of that number arrived in the last two months. The United States is the leading government donor to the crisis, having already provided nearly $385 million in humanitarian assistance. This escalating crisis, however, is challenging all of us to do more. We must ensure more life-saving assistance reaches people who need it.

The State Department continues to work overtime to ensure the Syrian people know that they are not alone and the American people stand beside them. Through frequent travel to the region, outreach to the Syrian diaspora in America, discussions with high-level leaders at home and abroad, and briefing the media, we are sending out our message of support.

Today, I participated in a Google+ Hangout about the Syrian crisis with Antonio Guterres, the High Commissioner for the UN refugee agency (UNHCR). Our conversation with Syria Deeply's Lara Setrakian was a frank discussion about the dangerous environment in which the international community works to get humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people. Even a few years ago, average citizens may not have had the opportunity to listen to this nuanced conversation.

Through these types of conversations, we want to bring the facts directly to the public. And the facts are these:

1) The United States is the leading humanitarian donor to the Syrian crisis helping people inside Syria and those who have fled as refugees to neighboring countries.

2) Some say that they do not see a high-profile, visible response to the crisis by the United States. This is not true. U.S. support underpins the most effective aid agencies, such as UNHCR, the World Food Program, and UNICEF.

3) Though the international community is responding -- it is not enough. It is time for the generous pledges made by other governments at the January 2013 Kuwait conference to become a reality. People's lives depend on it.

I will continue to use every avenue possible -- including via social media platforms -- to get the word out on the need to respond and the role the United States is playing. You, too, can help get the message out by clicking the links above, informing yourself, and sharing with others.



Cosima T.
Florida, USA
March 20, 2013

Cosima Carla T. in Florida writes:

I think it is so amazing that the State Department is helping the Syrian people. I just wish there was more that us civilians could do from home!

March 20, 2013

Andrey in Russia writes:

It is necessary to be "blind", that would not see the obvious truths. WILL THE SYRIANS, THEIR PRESIDENT, TO KILL HIS NATIVE LAND! Because it is their country and they live on this earth. And after the use of chemical weapons, it becomes contaminated and unfit for life for many years.

And foreign mercenaries, the militants is like poison for the money. And supplies them with the U.S. government.

The Syrians love their land and will not be on her crap. And the Americans spit on other lands and lives of people. They are the FIRST AND ONLY used the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, used chemical weapons in Vietnam. This proves that send fighters one missile in Syria for the United States is not worth anything.

Nik H.
March 21, 2013

Hello...Remember Mr Barack Obama How are you?
Now I am deaf female After Married at Malaysia matter problem impoverish to obtain request. I am deaf female After Married at Malaysia matter problem having little or no money and no eat. The Will of Allah. Please U Help you? Quick Help?

April 24, 2013

C.M. in Canada writes:

This White House Presidential fellow is suggesting a summer Salvation Army Kettle Program for Syria to create jobs!


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