Syria: Overseas Aid

International Development written question – answered on 10th November 2009.

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Photo of Jeremy Corbyn Jeremy Corbyn Labour, Islington North

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assistance his Department has provided to Syria (a) directly and (b) through multi-lateral agencies for assistance to Palestinian refugees in each year since 2002.

Photo of Michael Foster Michael Foster Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for International Development

Department for International Development (DFID) support to Palestinian refugees in Syria is through the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) who assist more than 450,000 refugees providing them with education, health care, social support and microfinance opportunities. Most of our assistance is core funding to UNRWA's budget of which approximately 8.5 per cent. is spent in Syria. An annual breakdown is in the following table. In 2007 the UK committed £100 million over five years in core funding to UNRWA.

£ million
UK funding to UNRWA general fund (calendar year) Estimated UNRWA spend in Syria (per calendar year)
2002 13 1.10
2003 15.5 1.31
2004 8.5 0.72
2005 13 1.10
2006 16.2 1.37
2007 15.6 1.33
2008 19 1.61
2009 20 1.70

In addition to this funding, the Department for International Development provided a total of £2.6 million between 2001 and 2006 to help develop UNRWA's education system by strengthening management from headquarter to school level. This support helped improve the education provided to all Palestinian refugee children across the region, including in Syria.

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