Minister of State McHugh visits Jordan and Lebanon
- Announces additional funding of €3million to deal with the impact of the Syria crisis in these two countries
- Brings Ireland's total support to the Syria crisis to over €70m since 2012
Minister of State for the Diaspora and International Development, Joe McHugh T.D., leaves today for a visit to Jordan and Lebanon. He will announce €3m in additional funding to deal with the impact of the Syria crisis in these two countries, and meet with Ministers from both Jordan and Lebanon to discuss the refugee crisis and the development of bilateral relations. This will bring Ireland's total financial contribution to dealing with the effects of the crisis in Syria to over €70million since 2012. Ireland's funding goes to Syrian people affected by the crisis in Syria and those who are displaced to neighbouring countries.
Jordan and Lebanon are currently hosting large numbers of refugees fleeing the conflict in Syria, placing severe strain on the governments and populations of both countries. The Minister will meet with Syrian refugees in both countries to learn first-hand about their experiences of the conflict, and as refugees.
He will also meet with representatives of the Jordanian and Lebanese governments to learn how they are providing support to Syrian refugees, and the impact the crisis is having on their respective countries. In addition, he will also meet with UN agencies and the ICRC, visit their projects and see how Irish Aid funding is being used on the ground. In Lebanon, the Minister will visit projects run by Trócaire and Concern, assisted by Irish Aid funding.
Minister McHugh will also visit 336 Irish troops from the 109th Infantry Battalion who are currently serving with the UN peace-keeping force, UNIFIL, in Southern Lebanon.
Before leaving Ireland earlier today, Minister McHugh said:
‘Ireland is committed to supporting those affected by the crisis in Syria. The displacement of millions inside Syria and the flight of millions to neighbouring countries underlines the horrific violence and the appalling suffering caused by this conflict. This visit to Jordan and Lebanon is to witness first-hand the situation for Syrian refugees in these countries, and how this has impacted on host communities.
“This visit will also give me a very welcome opportunity to meet with members of the Defence Forces who are currently serving with UNIFIL in Southern Lebanon. These men and women of the 109th Infantry Battalion are continuing Ireland’s long and proud tradition of participation in UN peace-keeping missions. I will be thanking them on the Government’s behalf for their service. We should all be very proud of them and I know that I also bring with me the best wishes of the people of Ireland.”
27 February 2017
Notes to the editor:
• Minister of State for the Diaspora and International Development Joe McHugh T.D. visits Jordan and Lebanonfrom 27th February to 2nd March 2017.
• In Jordan the Minister will visit Za’atari refugee camp and meet with UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, ICRC, UNOCHA and the Jordanian government refugee service. He will also meet with the Minister of Planning and International Cooperation, Mr. Imad FAKHURI.
• In Lebanon the Minister will meet with the Minister for Social Affairs, H.E. Pierre Bou Assi and visit projects with UNWRA, Trocaire, Concern and the International Rescue Committee. The Minister will also visit the Irish troops in UNIFIL.
• Ireland will provide €3 million in humanitarian funding to Jordan and Lebanon. €1.5 million will be provided to the UNOCHA Humanitarian Pooled Fund for Jordan and €1.5 million will be provided to the UNOCHA Humanitarian Pooled Fund for Lebanon. This funding is part of Ireland’s humanitarian response to the Syria crisis in 2017.
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