The tragic conflict in Syria

According to a report by the Syrian Centre for Policy Research (SCPR) 11.5% of the Syrian population have been killed or injured since the crisis erupted in March 2011. Life expectancy has dropped from 70 in 2010 to 55.4 in 2015. After nearly five years of conflict Syria’s national wealth, infrastructure and institutions have been almost destroyed.

Last week Britain, Germany, Norway and Kuwait co-hosted a conference in London that focused on ho w to support the region and move towards a more comprehensive and coordinated plan. The conference raised $10bn, which is the largest amount ever raised for a humanitarian cause in a single day. At the conference it was clearly stated that by the end of the 2016/17 school year all refugee children in host communities – 1.7 million girls and boys – will be in quality education. In addition host countries will open up their labour markets to create an estimated 1.1 million jobs for refugees from Syria and host country citizens in the region by 2018. This is to be made possible by packages of support including funding, concessional financing ($40bn of loans), employment creation programs, and private sector investment.

The Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven and foreign minister Margot Wallström both attended the conference and Löfven presented the Swedish long-term plan for Syria as well as more funds to support the Syrian people. Wallström focused on the need to support women and children affected by the conflict. At the end of the conference there was a meeting between the Nordic Prime Ministers where the refugee crisis was very much at the centre of discussions.

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