Germany to offer 4 million euros to help Syria on Iraqi refugees

from Xinhua
Published on 28 Aug 2007
DAMASCUS, Aug 28, 2007 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Visiting German Economic Cooperation and Development Minister Heidemarie Wieczorek-Zeul said Tuesday that her country intended to offer 4 million euros to help Syria deal with the big number of Iraqi refugees.

Wieczorek-Zeul made the remarks at a joint press conference with Syrian Deputy Premier for Economic Affairs Abdullah al- Dardari, expressing her country's appreciation of Syria to host Iraqi refugees.

Wieczorek-Zeul said Germany also granted Syria 34 million euros to carry out water projects and establish banks for small loans.

She stressed her country's support to the development process in Syria and its efforts to increase renewable energy activities while praising important steps achieved by Syria in the economic and social fields.

For his part, Dardari indicated that Syria benefited from German experience in moving towards a social market economy, calling on German businessmen and companies to invest in Syria.

Wieczorek-Zeul arrived here earlier Tuesday to start a three- day official visit during which she is to visit German-funded development projects and open a center for German-Syrian economic cooperation in Damascus.

According to the official SANA news agency, Wieczorek-Zeul met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Prime Minister Mohammad Naji Ottri and Dardari during the day.

Syria is currently hosting more than 1.5 million Iraqi refugees who fled the turbulences in their homeland after the U.S. invasion

in 2003.