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20.03.2023 | Press Release

International Donors’ Conference in Brussels for Earthquake Victims in Türkiye and Syria

Welthungerhilfe: “People in Syria and Türkiye need long-term and sustainable support”

Erdbeben in der Türkei und in Syrien: Zerstörte Häuser.
The earthquakes on February 6th, 2023 in Türkiye and Syria destroyed many cities, including the city of Antakya in the Hatay region. © Stefanie Glinski/Welthungerhilfe
Simone Pott Team Communications

Bonn/Berlin, 2023-03-20. In connection with the international donor conference taking place in Brussels today on behalf of earthquake victims in Syria and Türkiye, Welthungerhilfe is urging long-term and sustainable support for the affected people. There is an urgent need for new funds that can be flexibly used, not only to resolve the immediate emergency but also to address structural deficits and strengthen regional economic cycles; to this end, long-term investment in reconstruction is indispensable and must include local stakeholders.

Several earthquakes shook southeastern Türkiye, near the border with Syria, on February 6, 2023. People urgently need support now.

The recent earthquake thrust millions of people further into disaster, especially in Syria, where years of civil war had already cost them their livelihoods. According to the UN, more than 15 million people in Syria are currently dependent on humanitarian assistance.

“Nearly six weeks after the devastating earthquake, need in Türkiye and Syria is still high. While aid efforts in Türkiye reached many affected people within a few days, victims in Syria had to wait too long for help. At the same time, military attacks in north-western Syria continue unabated. People who had already lost everything now have to seek shelter from air attacks too. Our staff in the region report that, following twelve years of civil war, people are now at the end of their strength and feel forgotten by the international community. They see no hope or future for themselves. The Donors’ Conference must therefore send a clear message and ensure long-term support so that we can finally end the humanitarian permacrisis facing the people here,” urges Mathias Mogge, the secretary general of Welthungerhilfe.

Welthungerhilfe has been active in the region since 2013. With 245 employees across its Gaziantep regional office (Türkiye) and project offices in north-western Syria, and in collaboration with local partner organisations, Welthungerhilfe is supporting Syrian refugees and host communities in north-western Syria and south-eastern Türkiye.

Welthungerhilfe is asking for donations for the earthquake victims. Please designate these donations as “Earthquake Aid” in the memo line or in the donation purpose field online.

Help victims of the earthquakes by donating now

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A family in Hatay, Türkiye, in front of piles of debris after the earthquakes. © Stefanie Glinski / Welthungerhilfe
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Imam Özkara in front of his destroyed house in Kapicam, Kahramanmaras. He lost his father and grandmother in the earthquake on February 6. He was able to rescue his mother from the debris. © Stefanie Glinski / Welthungerhilfe
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The earthquakes on February 6, 2023 in Türkiye destroyed many cities, including the city of Antakya in the Hatay region. © Stefanie Glinski / Welthungerhilfe
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Old house and temporary shelter in a tent: In Hatay, thousands of people have lost their homes. © Stefanie Glinski / Welthungerhilfe
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Mathias Mogge, Secretary General of Welthungerhilfe. © Christoph Papsch/Welthungerhilfe
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Welthungerhilfe is one of the largest private aid organisations in Germany and has no political or religious affiliations. It is fighting for “Zero Hunger by 2030”. Since its inception, it has provided funding of EUR 4.46 billion for more than 10,895 overseas projects in 70 countries. Welthungerhilfe operates according to the foundational principle of help for self-help, which it implements with measures ranging from rapid disaster relief to rehabilitation to long-term development cooperation projects with national and international partner organisations.

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