Syria Crisis

Syria Crisis

Music class in Sahnaya al-Muhdatheh School, Rif Damascus. © 2017 UNRWA Photo by Taghrid Mohammad

Now in its seventh year, the conflict in Syria continues to have shattering consequences for ordinary people that have lost their homes, livelihoods and security.  Palestine refugees are one of the communities worst affected by the conflict.  They rely on UNRWA to provide life-saving aid...

UNRWA Commissioner-General, Pierre Krӓhebühl, launches the UNRWA Emergency Appeal for Syria, Gaza and the West Bank during a press conference at the UNOG Palais des Nations in Geneva on 30 January 2018. © 2018 UNRWA Photo
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has launched an appeal for its emergency programmes of over US$ 800 million; approximately US$ 400 million each for Syria and the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), which consists of Gaza and the West Bank.
UNRWA Commissioner-General Pierre Krähenbühl visits the Agency's health centre in Khan Eshieh Camp in Rif Damascus,  Syria. © 2017 UNRWA photo by Taghrid Mohammad
UNRWA Commissioner-General Pierre Krähenbühl visited Syria from 18 to 20 November 2017, meeting with Palestine refugees, UNRWA staff and senior government officials
A student voice project that gives young people a say in their education and future.
In Syria, the European Union donated EUR 10 million in support of UNRWA development and emergency programming, benefitting Palestine refugees across the country. The donation includes support to the education and health programmes, the technical and vocational education and training, the microfinance department and the emergency cash assistance. Thanks to the EU-supported Engaging Youth project, the Agency bolsters the resilience of Palestine refugees through the provision of continuing education, career guidance, business development and life-skills.
Safe learning space, Damascus, Syria. © 2017 UNRWA Photo by Taghrid Mohammad
In conflict-torn Syria, UNRWA has set up eight safe learning spaces and 22 recreational playgrounds in communities and shelters to provide children with a protected environment to continue with their learning and engage in recreational activities, building their social skills and contributing to their overall well-being and resilience

Palestine refugees from Syria have been severely affected by the ongoing armed conflict. Of the total 560,000 Palestine refugees from Syria, almost all require assistance. Click here to read more.



© 2016 UNRWA Photo by Taghrid Mohammed
Engaging with the youth of Syria
#MyVoiceMySchool. © UNRWA Photo


Latest News

The Syria Crisis

Into the seventh year of conflict, conditions in Syria remain volatile and marked by continuing and intense armed violence and limited humanitarian access. Amid this unconscionable bloodshed and destruction, Palestine refugees remain particularly vulnerable and have been disproportionately affected by the conflict, due to their proximity to conflict areas inside Syria, high rates of poverty, and the tenuous legal status of those forced to flee to Lebanon and Jordan. The timeline below tells their story.

Facts and Figures


The majority of the 438,000 Palestine refugees remaining in Syria have been displaced at least once within Syria –with some having been displaced multiple times – and over 95 per cent of them remain in continuous need of humanitarian aid to meet their most basic needs. Up to 280,000 Palestine refugees from Syria (PRS) are currently displaced inside Syria, with a further 120,000 displaced to neighbouring countries, including Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Egypt and increasingly, to Europe. The escalating violence makes movement and access more difficult and causes severe hardship. Jordan effectively closed its borders to Palestine refugees from Syria (PRS) early in the conflict; Lebanon followed suit in May 2015.

There are 31,000 PRS in Lebanon. Many of them have been pushed into a precarious and marginalized existence due to their uncertain legal status and face limited social protection, making them heavily reliant on UNRWA for their basic needs.

Gap 74.39
Coverage 25.61

Funding Requirements

In 2017, UNRWA requires US$ 411 million for its humanitarian response to the Syria crisis, centred on preserving resilience through the provision of humanitarian assistance in the form of cash, food and relief items. UNRWA will provide a protective framework for Palestine refugees through helping mitigate their vulnerability by maintaining access to basic services including education; health; water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH); and by promoting respect for international humanitarian law (IHL) and international human rights law (IHRL). UNRWA will strengthen humanitarian capacity, coordination and management to improve the effectiveness of its emergency programme delivery.

Read more in the 2017 Syria Emergency Appeal.

Total Appeal$411,000,000
Received to Date$105,260,000

With thanks to our donors

Our ability to respond depends on the generosity of donors and the guarantee of safe and consistent access to those in need, in accordance with international law. We urge donors to maintain and increase their support in 2017 to mitigate the humanitarian impacts of the crisis in Syria, enhance the protection of civilians and prevent further suffering. We call on all parties to the Syria conflict to urgently pursue a negotiated solution and put an end to the violence, destruction, and violation of rights, dignity and humanity.

With thanks to our donors thumbnail © UNRWA

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