More than $1.5 billion pledged to help Syrian civilians

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Young Syrian refugees look out from the door of their family’s tent at a camp in Turkey.

More than $1.5 billion has been pledged to help civilians affected by the conflict in Syria at a conference of international donors in Kuwait.

The UN says Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah opened the meeting with a donation of $300 million, which was matched by the UAE and Saudi Arabia.

In his opening remarks, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said that as we search for a political solution, we must do everything we can now to help our fellow human beings who are suffering and dying before our eyes.

He urged the international community to "ease their burden, give them hope, and help them survive these dark days until they can return home and build a brighter future for Syria.

Secretary-General Ban appealed to all to be generous with their donations saying "We urgently need your help".

He said while he's mindful of budget pressures every government faces, we "cannot allow funding constraints to prevent us from bringing life-saving aid to people in desperate need".

He said that without resources, we cannot deliver; without resources, more people will die, adding "this emergency requires our maximum efforts".

Governments, NGOs, individuals, the private sector… all have a role to play, the UN Secretary-General concluded.

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration: 1’10″

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