Syria

Only 58% of Britons are aware of the Syrian Civil War as it marks its 10th anniversary

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Syria Relief, the UK’s largest Syria-focused charity, announced today that the Syrian conflict is being “forgotten and ignored” as it is about to commemorate 10 years since the start of the civil war. Syria Relief have released today the results of a YouGov poll which shows that only 58% of Britons are aware that the Syrian conflict is ongoing. When Syria Relief and YouGov last conducted this poll in August 2019, the results showed that 77% of Britons were aware that the conflict was ongoing – showing a 19% decrease in awareness. March 15th 2021 will make 10 years since the start of the Syrian Civil War.

In response to this lack of UK awareness and the grim milestone of the Syrian conflict, Syria Relief are launching their “This Is Not Their History, This Is Their Future” campaign. The campaign aims to educate the British public of the growing humanitarian needs being exacerbated by the Syrian conflict.

Othman Moqbel, Syria Relief’s Chief Executive says:

“This tragic commemoration of 10 years of this brutal conflict is being compounded by the fact that in the UK and throughout the West, the suffering of the Syrian people is being forgotten and ignored. The YouGov poll commissioned by Syria relief today reveals that almost 2 in 5 people aren’t aware that the Syrian conflict is still happening, when the reality is, for Syrians, the situation is getting worse.

“We want the world to know that the Syrian conflict and the suffering of the Syrian people is not history. It’s happening now and it will keep on happening unless action is taken.

“Within Syria there are now over 80% of the population living in poverty, 9.3 million people are food insecure and a further 2.2 million are on the brink of becoming food insecure. 15.5 million Syrians lack the basic access to clean and hygienic water, something we take for granted. The healthcare system has been crippled, long-before COVID-19, and 2.4 million children are out of education. This is all mostly due to the deliberate and indiscriminate bombing of civilian life; homes, schools, hospitals, markets and vital infrastructure.

“The global pandemic has further worsened the misery and suffering, Syrians are also facing spiralling inflation and growing unemployment. People are being priced out of affording basic items. Regular meals are a distant memory for many Syrians.

“Whilst 6.2 million people remain internally displaced in Syria, 5.6 million Syrians are refugees in the neighbouring countries, approximately half of whom are children. Many have to live in tents and makeshift huts, even during freezing temperatures in the winter.

“The widespread human suffering isn’t a tragic symptom of this war, it has been an intentional tactic to achieve a military victory. A bomb landing on a hospital or a primary school is rarely a bomb which has missed its target – it’s a bomb which has hit its target. Forgetting about the Syrian conflict does not just result in the desperately poor Syrian people not receiving the humanitarian aid they rely on, it means less scrutiny on the military actors in this conflict, allowing them to continue to commit war crimes. Syrians cannot afford for us to treat this anniversary as a history lesson, otherwise their suffering will continue for another 10 years and more.”

ENDS

NOTES TO EDITORS

Syria Relief (UK registered charity no. 1143797) were founded in 2011 to provide humanitarian aid to victims of the Syrian conflict. Syria Relief specialise in providing humanitarian aid and development projects during conflict. In 2020, Syria Relief have supported 2,091,325 victims of conflict in Syria, Yemen, Lebanon and Jordan. Some of Syria Relief’s work includes:

306 schools
10 static and 4 mobile healthcare facilities,
19 Child Friendly Spaces
2 Child Protection Teams
3 GBV & SGBV Centres
8 Psychosocial Support Centres

In 2020 alone Syria Relief provided:

· Access to clean water for 329,780 people

· Food to 64,006 people

· Life-saving NFI kits for 165,000 people

· Education to 105,507 children

· Medical care to 292,706 people

www.syriarelief.org.uk

Representatives from Syria Relief are available for interview, contact Charles Lawley, Head of Communications and Advocacy

Email: c.lawley@syriarelief.org.uk

Call: +961 70186 001

WhatsApp: +447535415060