U.N. Resident Coordinator and U.N. Development Program Resident Representative Irena Vojackova praised Turkey’s ongoing efforts for the Syrian refugees, while urging the EU to fulfill its obligation toward Turkey regarding the refugee crisis.
Speaking at a meeting in Ankara organized under the auspices of the 2017-2018 Regional Refugee and Resilience Plan (3RP) Monday, Vojackova explained that the latest 3RP plan provides 60 percent financing for Syrian refugees, while adding that Turkey urgently needs substantial financial funding to fulfill its responsibilities regarding the refugee influx to increase the country’s stability.
As the Syrian crisis enters its sixth year, the Republic of Turkey, relevant U.N. agencies and partners have formally launched Turkey’s chapter of the 3RP. While Representative Vojackova explained that Turkey is the country hosting the largest number of refugees across the globe, she also pointed out that the Turkish government provides Syrian refugees not only with housing but also with education, health care and employment in the labor force under the Turkish government’s policies designed to support the refugees. Vojackova also emphasized that thousands of children in Turkey have benefited from the governmental initiatives that granted the children access to education in many areas, equipping them with the skills they need to eventually return home to Syria. Vojackova added that she is very proud to work with Turkey, stressing that providing Turkey with financial support is a fundamental issue in the context of the growing needs of Syrian refugees and the Turkish communities that host them. She pointed out that the resilience of the Turkish people is one of the biggest reasons for Turkey’s successful undertaking of such a task, noting that the Syrian conflict is a long-term issue that is expected to persist, making humanitarian aid crucial for many years to come.
On the other hand, the Vice President of Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD) Fatih Özer indicated that some aid is being provided by the AFAD authorities. Pointing out that an office designed specifically to handle refugee-related issues was opened in Gaziantep, Özer noted that such establishments aim to provide coordination with civil society organizations. Özer also noted that the regional clearance of Syrian territory was provided by the Fırat Operation, and restoration of the buildings in that area continues. According to Özer, more than 26,000 Syrians returned to Jarablus, and local residents there are now living in peace.