UN agency distributes food aid in Syria's drought-hit north

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Pastor Dale Morgan

Jun 20, 2010, 9:24:15 PM6/20/10
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Perilous Times and Climate Change

UN agency distributes food aid in Syria's drought-hit north

Damascus (AFP) June 20, 2010 - The World Food Programme said on Sunday that it has begun handing out food to almost 200,000 people in severely drought-stricken northeast Syria.

More than 2,900 tonnes of food rations, made possible by a two-million-euro donation (2.5 million dollars) by the European Commission, was being distributed since the start of June in the provinces of Al-Hasakeh, Al-Raqqa and Deir Ezzor, the UN agency said in a statement.

 "Thanks to these funds, WFP purchased enough food to support tens of thousands of the most vulnerable drought-affected families," the statement quoted WFP country director Muhannad Hadi as saying. The WFP said it has so far "received less than half of the 22 million dollars it needs to provide food to the 300,000 drought-hit people targeted for assistance ... leaving 110,000 people without help."

Syria has been afflicted by severe drought over the past four years, making conditions especially difficult for the rural poor and accelerating the flight from the countryside to the cities.
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