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    More than 1.7 million Syrian refugees will starve this winter because the UN World Food Program funds have dried up. Simon Jenkins, a prominent British journalist, blasts Western governments, which have lured the region into continuous war but are unwilling to deal with its consequences.

    MOSCOW, December 2 (Sputnik) — More than 1.7 million Syrian refugees will starve this winter as the UN World Food Program (WFP) has run out of money and halted its assistance to victims of the longstanding conflict; some experts claim Britain and the United States should fix the refugee crisis, since they “helped smash the region.”

    "There was always money for military action. America spent $3 trillion fighting in Iraq. Britain spent £40 billion on Afghanistan alone, under the obscene rubric of "humanitarian intervention" … The US, Britain and NATO played a major part in disrupting the region, indulging in "wars of choice" in Serbia, Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. For a decade they toppled regimes and either fought or backed insurgents with bombs and troops. Peace they did not bring," wrote Simon Jenkins, a prominent British journalist and author of "Britain and the US must help mend the Syrian refugee crisis they helped create," published by the Guardian.

    According to the Wall Street Journal, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees requested $3.7 billion in June 2014 in order to support millions of Syrian refugees, but it has received only 51 percent of the funds. The WFP's food electronic voucher program has already contributed $800 million to the countries hosting refugees, however, more funds are urgently needed. Syrian children in many refugee camps are facing another harsh winter without footwear and proper clothing.

    "If we don't urgently get this assistance, get the $64 million for December alone, people will simply go hungry," said Joelle Eid, the WFP's communication officer, as quoted by the media source.

    "Britain's eagerness for war contrasts with an aversion to the consequences," emphasizes Simon Jenkins, blasting the Western governments for creating a devastating military conflict in the Middle East.

    "Even within its aid budget, Britain spends freely on corrupt governments, phony consultants and global warming projects. It has cash for glamour causes at home and abroad," he writes, adding "there is nothing glamorous about a refugee camp. It is merely necessary. Britain helped smash this region. It must help mend it."

    Along with Western governments "tired of Muslim wars" and its victims, the rich Gulf monarchies are also not rushing to help their Muslim coreligionists. The Independent cited an anonymous source as saying: "It's a long-running frustration that particularly with these crises in the Middle East, the donors who don't seem to be coming forward are the Gulf states. They could be contributing more to the international humanitarian system."

    Qatar and the United Arab Emirates contribute little to humanitarian efforts, the media outlet notes, adding that in 2013 the UAE "gave just $50,000 to all of WFP's projects," far less than Swaziland, Peru or Madagascar.


    UN Halts Food Aid to Syrian Refugees Asking Gulf States to Contribute
    Suspension of UN Food Aid for Syrian Refugees May Escalate Tensions: WFP
    refugees, UN World Food Program (WFP), United States, Britain, Syria
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