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(New York, 13 September 2013) Valerie Amos, the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, today allocated US$50 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund to boost the efforts of humanitarian agencies assisting the growing number of Syrians affected by the crisis, in the country and in the region.

“Conditions for Syrians fleeing the conflict in their country get worse by the day. I am releasing $50 million to help United Nations agencies in the region keep pace with the growing demand,” said USG Amos. “The CERF contribution represents a show of solidarity with the people of Syria as the funds come from donors, large and small, across the world.”

Today’s CERF allocation is the largest ever single contribution to support coordinated response to a single crisis. US$20 million will support aid operations inside Syria, $15 million will go to scale up efforts in Lebanon, another $10 million is intended to help the recent influx of Syrian refugees in Iraq, and the remaining $5 million will boost humanitarian programmes in Jordan.

The numbers of Syrians affected by the conflict have grown rapidly, with more than 4.2 million people displaced within their country and another 2 million who have fled to other countries in the region. The Humanitarian Response Plans for the Syria Crisis remain short of funding having so far received only half of the $4.4 billion required.

CERF has already allocated $31 million for UN efforts in Syria and neighbouring countries this year, in addition to $53 million since the conflict began in 2011. The allocation makes the humanitarian agencies in Syria the top recipient of CERF funding in 2013.

Before today, the largest single CERF allocation was made in 2010, in response to a request for just over $30 million from the United Nations in Somalia, to combat the effects of drought and food shortages.

CERF was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 2006 to make funding for humanitarian emergencies faster and more equitable. Since then, more than 120 Member States and dozens of private sector donors have pledged nearly US$3.3 billion to the Fund. Since its inception, CERF has allocated more than US$3 billion for humanitarian agencies operating in 87 countries and territories.

Please find the press release here.