WFP scaling up operations to meet dramatic increase in Syrian refugees

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Syrian children displaced by the conflict.

The numbers of Syrian refugees, particularly in Jordan and Lebanon are increasing in a dramatic fashion with Jordan receiving some 2,000 a day, according to David Kaatrud of the World Food Programme (WFP).

As a result, the agency has begun scaling up its operations to meet the requirements for the summer and beyond.

But he says there are resource constraints as the populations arrive in Jordan and Lebanon in large numbers and require food assistance while waiting to be registered.

And according to Mr. Kaatrud, there are other challenges.

“Inside Syria itself, of course the needs have been tremendous. When I think back to when we first got involved in this operation about a year ago, we were talking in numbers about how to assist 50 to 100, 000 and we are now looking at not only how to continue our meeting the needs of 1.5 million, but also scaling up to 2.5 million which we hope to attain in April. The challenges are of course, daunting; the needs we know are already outstripping our ability to meet them…,”

Mr. Kaatrud cites other challenges such as access, existing capacity to deliver and distribute and, resources.

He says throughout the conflict, WFP has been reaching destinations in all 14 governorates of Syria, but of late, there's been particular difficulty in reaching a few such as – Aleppo, Idleb and Hasakeya in the northeast.- areas he describes as "hot zones in terms of conflict:.

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration: 1’26″

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