Middle East

Minister Müller visits Jordan, has talks about Syrian crisis

"International community must not close its eyes – Germany is helping host countries and refugees deal with one of the world's biggest refugee tragedies"

Gerd Müller, Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, visits a local German development project in Jordan.

17.02.2014 |

Amman – Today, Dr Gerd Müller, Federal Minister for Economic Co­op­er­a­tion and De­vel­op­ment, visited Za'atari refugee camp in Jordan. It is estimated that more than 100,000 refugees from Syria are living in the camp. The Minister then visited a Jordanian com­mu­ni­ty that is hosting refugees from Syria, and he visited local German de­vel­op­ment projects concerned with water supply as well as schooling and vocational education.

Minister Müller said, "Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt are coun­tries to which we owe great thanks and respect for their efforts in hosting millions of Syrian refugees. They have set an example by taking people in who were in severe distress, and they are reaching the limits of their capacity. We will therefore increase our support in the area of water supply and sanitation and make a contribution to UNICEF's efforts to set up schools and provide psychosocial care. Hundreds of thousands of refugee children need a future. We need to do everything we can to prevent the region's destabilisation."

Jordan is one of the most water-poor coun­tries in the world. As a result of the refugee crisis, even more people now need to survive on the country's scarce water resources. Jordan has 6.3 million people and is now hosting 615,000 Syrian refugees. During a meeting with Ibrahim Saif, Jordan's Minister of Planning and In­ter­national Co­op­er­a­tion, Minister Müller therefore committed an additional 15 million euros in support of water supply and sanitation activities. Germany will also provide 10 million euros for UNICEF's No Lost Generation initiative to create school places for 100,000 children, provide textbooks and offer psychosocial care for children who have been traumatised by war and by their experience as refugees.

On the previous evening, Minister Müller had been received by Prince Hassan of Jordan for a meeting. Prince Hassan paid tribute to Germany's involvement in the region. He chairs the UN Secretary-General's Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation (UNSGAB).

The Syrian crisis is one of the biggest humanitarian crises in the last 20 years. The violent conflict in Syria has claimed more than 120,000 lives and triggered enormous refugee flows. According to the United Nations, there are 6.5 million internally displaced people and 2.4 million registered refugees in neighbouring coun­tries, including more than a million children. The crisis is putting enormous strain on the host coun­tries. Germany has so far made available nearly 140 million euros in response to the refugee crisis in the region.

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