Syria has been in the midst of a civil war for nearly three years, an ongoing conflict that has thus far claimed the lives of more than 120,000 people, forced 3 million to flee the country, and displaced 4 million people inside its borders.
The conflict is between those who support the Ba’ath government and those who want to see it ousted. In addition to the deaths and displacements caused by the war, tens of thousands of protesters have been reported imprisoned and tortured. The Syrian government has been found responsible for the vast majority of the humanitarian abuses and injustices, and the world at large has protested the use of chemical weapons during this time of war.
In short, the Syrian Civil War is a humanitarian disaster. The country’s citizens are suffering on a massive scale, and the United Nations (among others) are providing much-needed support and humanitarian aid.
Recently, several non-governmental philanthropies raised a total of $400 million for Syria. And on Wednesday, an international donor conference in Kuwait opened, with the U.N. hoping to raise $6.5 billion for Syria and the surrounding countries, making it the largest aid appeal in its history.
Funds raised will go toward providing food, drinking water, medicine, shelter, and other necessities. One big concern, though, is that the funds pledged actually get delivered to the U.N.’s doorstep—thus far about 70 percent of the funds pledge have been received, which U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon attributes to “fatigue among donor countries because of this continuing violence.”