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UN World Food Programme to suspend food aid to 1.7 million Syrian refugees

December 2, 2014 at 4:49 pm

The United Nations World Food Programme said on Monday that due to lack of funding it will stop providing food vouchers for 1.7 million Syrian refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt.

The programme said the suspension will affect hundreds of thousands of displaced Syrian families who will face difficult crises during the harsh winter months.

The programme’s executive director, Ertharin Cousin, warned that the suspension would jeopardise the health and safety of these refugees and may even provoke new tensions and instabilities in the neighbouring states that host them.

Since the outbreak of the Syrian conflict three years ago, the World Food Programme has been working to provide food for millions of displaced Syrians inside the country and hundreds of thousands of refugees in neighbouring countries.

The organisation distributed food stamps that allowed Syrian refugees to buy food from shops in the areas where they live, which led to pumping nearly $800 million to the economy of host countries over the past few years. However, after the organisation failed to raise the $64 million needed to support refugees it has issued its decision to suspend the programme.