Turkey-Syria Earthquake: UN Launches Flash Appeal for $397.6 Million

On February 6, a 7.7 magnitude earthquake struck southern Turkey and northern Syria, causing unprecedented destruction and loss of life.[0] As of 13 February, the death toll in northwest Syria has surpassed 4,400, with more than 7,600 injured, 11,000 left homeless, and 57,000 displaced.[1] The total death toll for both countries combined is now over 37,000.[2]

In the wake of the disaster, international aid has been slow to reach the affected areas, as they are largely under the control of opposition groups and are, therefore, largely without access to critical search-and-rescue reinforcements and lifesaving aid.[3] As of 13 February, 58 trucks loaded with aid provided by six UN agencies have crossed to north-west Syria over a period of five days.[1]

In response to the humanitarian implications of the crisis, the UN has launched a Flash Appeal for $397.6 million to cover a period of three months and help secure desperately needed, life-saving relief to nearly 5 million Syrians.[4] Nearly 3 million people in the Idleb Governorate have also been affected.[5]

The UN and humanitarian partners are calling for all parties to the conflict to facilitate the rapid and unfettered passage of lifesaving aid to earthquake survivors in all affected parts of Syria.[2] The disaster has caused untold suffering, and it is imperative that the international community come together to provide support to those affected.

0. “The Syria earthquake and aid crisis is a “perfect storm”” Vox.com, 12 Feb. 2023, https://www.vox.com/world/2023/2/12/23594720/earthquake-aid-crisis-syria-united-nations

1. “Earthquake disaster: UN chief welcomes Syria decision to open aid corridors” UN News, 13 Feb. 2023, https://news.un.org/en/story/2023/02/1133437

2. “Northwest Syria: Aid Delays Deadly for Quake Survivors” Human Rights Watch, 15 Feb. 2023, https://www.hrw.org/news/2023/02/15/northwest-syria-aid-delays-deadly-quake-survivors

3. “Syrians lament disaster after disaster in earthquake ravaged Jindayris” Middle East Eye, 15 Feb. 2023, https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/syria-earthquake-jindayris-displaced-slow-aid-weary-future

4. “Guterres calls on countries to fully fund $397 million quake appeal for Syria” UN News, 13 Feb. 2023, https://news.un.org/en/story/2023/02/1133467

5. “Earthquakes: North-west Syria: Flash Update No. 8 as of 14 February 2023 – Syrian Arab Republic” ReliefWeb, 14 Feb. 2023, https://reliefweb.int/report/syrian-arab-republic/earthquakes-north-west-syria-flash-update-no-8-14-february-2023