MONTREAL, March 11, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - On the eve of the fifth anniversary of the start of the war in Syria, Development and Peace is launching a national advocacy campaign that is calling on the Canadian government to take concrete measures in the Syrian peace process and to address the many challenges that civilians face in their own country, as well as those encountered by refugees who have fled into exile in neighboring countries.
Development and Peace welcomes recent initiatives by the Government of Canada, including the resettlement of 25,000 Syrian refugees to the country and increasing the amount allocated to humanitarian aid and long-term development. However, given the tragic situation, which is deteriorating by the day, Development and Peace urges the government to do more to find a peaceful solution to the conflict and assist those most vulnerable, who are so severely affected.
In a letter sent to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Development and Peace makes three recommendations to help alleviate the suffering of the Syrian people and find a peaceful solution to the conflict:
- Contribute to the peace process by making the voices of Syrian civil society heard;
- Ensure access to humanitarian aid and the protection of civilians; and
- Promote social cohesion and self-sufficiency of refugees in neighbouring countries.
"Since the war started on March 15, 2011, 470,000 Syrians have been killed, 1.9 million injured, 13.5 million are in need of urgent humanitarian aid, and 4.6 million have had to seek refuge abroad, while 6.6 million been displaced internally. Let's not forget that behind these shocking numbers, there are people – children, women and men. Resolving this terrible humanitarian crisis and securing lasting peace in Syria is an urgent priority," says David Leduc, Executive Director of Development and Peace
Development and Peace has been responding to the crisis in Syria since the fall of 2012. The organization is active in Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey where it has invested $24.2M in humanitarian aid and local initiatives to promote peace. Working with local partners on the ground, it has provided assistance to 600,000 Syrians.
SOURCE DEVELOPMENT AND PEACE
For further information: Kelly Di Domenico, Communications Officer, 514-257-8710, ext. 365, 514 226-6920, [email protected]