The Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean (PAM) is participating at the launch by the United Nations in Geneva, of the 2013 Syria Humanitarian Assistance Response Plan (SHARP) and the Syria Regional Response Plan (SRRP).  The programme  will cover the period from January 1 to the end of June 2013, and the plans to provide humanitarian assistance within and beyond Syria’s borders require $1.5 billion.  Collectively they comprise the largest short term humanitarian appeal ever.

PAM is represented by its Permanent Observer to the UN and other International Organisations in Geneva, Ambassador Gerhard J.W. Putman-Cramer. During the launch it was highlighted that people in need of assistance on account of the Syrian crisis has quadrupled since March 2012.

Within Syria, and besides prevailing insecurity and cold weather conditions, lack of access, lack of adequate capacity to deliver humanitarian assistance and lack of funds are serious concerns. The Regional refugee population has increased from 70,000 in May 2012 to 525,000 today.

PAM has been constantly engaged through its parliamentary diplomatic channels to raise awareness on the humanitarian requirements of the region and has expressed its concern on the increasing number of families, old and young, fleeing their home to avoid the escalating violence.

PAM has noted that the Palestinian refugee camps in Syria have come under attack and is supporting the call of President Mahmoud Abbas to all Palestinians in the camps, to refrain from taking any sides in the internal conflict in Syria.

Furthermore, the Assembly is once again calling on all parties to the conflict in Syria, to respect international humanitarian channels of assistance to the civilian population at large, and to avoid the involvement of the Palestinian refugee camps in military action.//

ISSUED ON: 19.12.2012

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