By Arab News
The humanitarian crisis in Syria has grown to such dimensions that at least $500 million in aid is required to meet the needs of the Syrian people, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) said in an appeal to donors.
“We are calling for increased humanitarian efforts and cooperation between international and regional organizations in order to deliver urgent humanitarian aid to the Syrian people in Syria and in neighbouring countries,” said Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, head of the OIC.
“The amount of aid needed for Syria is $500 million,” he said
The Kingdom launched a nationwide fundraising campaign last week to help the people of Syria, collecting more than SR 440 million.
More than 276,000 Syrians have fled their country since March 2011, according to UN refugee agency figures released yesterday.
The UNHCR also said thousands of people, forced to leave their homes in Aleppo, had sought shelter in schools and a university dormitory.
Syrian troops and fighters poured into Aleppo last night as both sides battened down for the long haul after 40 police were killed on day four of a pivotal battle in the nearly 17-month conflict.
Buoyed by the fighters’ success in resisting the massive assault by troops backed by tanks, artillery and helicopter gunships, leading dissident Haytham Al-Maleh announced in Cairo that he had been tasked with forming a government in exile. But the Syrian National Council said it is too early to form a government in exile and that Al-Maleh’s announcement was damaging.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said yesterday’s fighting in Aleppo was the fiercest so far.
“Hundreds of fighters attacked the police stations in Salhin and Bab Al-Nayrab and at least 40 policemen were killed during the fighting, which lasted for hours,” Observatory chief Rami Abdel Rahman said.