Brussels, 18 March 2023 (TDI): The European Union (EU) and Sweden are hosting a donor conference on 20 March. The conference aims to mobilize support for recovery and rehabilitation in Syria and Türkiye in the wake of a deadly earthquake.

The Donor’s Conference intends to raise funds and mobilize resources to expedite the recovery and response missions following the devastating earthquakes.

Turkey and Syria were struck by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake on 6th February 2023, causing large-scale destruction, and displacement killing thousands of people.

Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, and Ulf Kristersson, Prime Minister of Sweden, will jointly host the conference in Brussels to urge the international community for continuous support. The conference will be organized in close coordination with the Turkish authorities.

The President of the European Commission highlighted the importance of support for the affected region stating that the international community’s solidarity should continue to be as strong as it was in the first hours after the earthquake.

She reaffirmed support for the people in Türkiye and Syria in the long run. She further invited all donors, public and private to contribute and honor the memory of the lives lost, the heroism of the first responders and envision a better future for the survivors.

The European Union member states to neighboring countries, the United Nations to international financial institutions, will be among the participants. All stakeholders will contribute to relief efforts.

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is currently arranging a post-disaster needs assessment to inform the donors ahead of the conference about the reconstruction and rehabilitation needs in the affected region.

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The conference will be jointly chaired by the Commissioner in charge of Neighborhood and Enlargement, Olivér Várhelyi, and the Swedish Minister for International Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade, Johan Forssell.

So far, the European Union (EU) has responded to disaster-hit areas through aid from 21 member states, 32 search and rescue teams in Türkiye, and deploying 6 medical teams and 5 field hospitals.

The European Union has mobilized its strategic reserves to deliver 500 temporary accommodation units, 2000 tents, and 8000 beds to Türkiye from its emergency stockpiles hosted by Sweden and Romania.

In all, around €8.6 million of humanitarian aid by the European Union has been allocated to the population in Türkiye. Almost €10 million have been immediately mobilized to respond to the immediate consequences of the earthquake in Syria.

The European Union civil protection team in Beirut is coordinating the delivery of the assistance to Syria. The EU humanitarian experts are also present in Syria working with partners to ensure the aid reaches the most vulnerable.

Furthermore, 16 European Countries have helped Syria and Türkiye via the EU Civil Protection Mechanism.