Thursday 23 February 2017

Barry Andrews: Western nations standing idly by while the Syrian people suffer

Refugee children in the Al Zaatri camp in the Jordanian city of Mafraq, near the border with Syria
Refugee children in the Al Zaatri camp in the Jordanian city of Mafraq, near the border with Syria

THE suffering in Syria over the past two years has far exceeded that of any recent humanitarian crisis. I visited Turkey and Syria last month to review GOAL's programmes. The trip illustrated for me the frustrations felt by those who are anxious for an end to the conflict.

There may be limits to what the international community can do, but even if our governments did what they had promised, it would make a significant difference.

I visited a refugee centre on the Turkish side of the border, a four-storey building that is home to around 400 people. The head man didn't want to let us in. As a crowd gathered to listen to the negotiations, he explained that the refugees were weary of meeting NGOs who subsequently delivered nothing.

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