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  Society
IOM distributes aid to Syrian refugees
06/04/2012   |   11:09 AM | World News
تصغير الخطالشكل الأساسيتكبير الخط
GENEVA, April 6 (KUNA) -- The International Organisation of Migration (IOM) said on Friday it began a distribution of non-food aid to Syrian refugees in both Lebanon and Iraq.
The supplies delivered in North Lebanon icluded rechargeable LED lamps and personal hygiene kits in the Bekaa Valley, to refugees displaced by the conflict in neighbouring Syria, said the IOM in a press release.
The 1,750 lamps, needed due to regular power outages, and the 100 hygiene kits, will be handed over to beneficiaries identified by IOM and a local partner - the Coalition of Charities for the Aid of Syrians Displaced in the Bekaa Valley.
The distribution is expected to take place over the next two weeks. The hygiene kits, which comprise bathing and laundry soap, sanitary pads, toothbrushes, toothpaste, shampoo, wash cloths, razors, shaving cream, combs, plastic buckets and jerry cans, will be distributed to refugees in the Bekaa town of Baalbeck.
Some 8,594 displaced Syrians are now registered with UNHCR in North Lebanon, with an estimated 1,200 families or 6,254 people in the Bekaa.
IOM is expecting to launch a second distribution of non-food aid on April 23rd and is currently carrying out a needs assessment on the ground.
Both distributions will be funded through IOM's EPA Emergency Preparedness Account, which allows it to carry emergency needs assessments and operations prior to receiving donor funding.
At the same time, the IOM Iraq this week worked with UNHCR to distribute non-food relief items from IOM's emergency warehouse in Erbil to 34 newly arrived Syrian families at the newly established Domiz refugee camp in Iraq's Dahuk Governorate.
IOM distributed water filters, rechargeable lights, cooking stoves, gas cylinders, blankets and pillows, while UNHCR provided mattresses, kerosene heaters and jerry cans.
There are now some 75 registered refugee families in the camp and IOM plans to distribute relief items to the remaining 41 families in the coming days. At the official opening of the camp on April 4th, the mayor of Dahuk's Sumel District, Mazin Mohammed, said that he expected the number of Syrians coming into Iraq to double in the coming days. "We are doing all that we can to prepare for this influx, but the ongoing support of both IOM and UNHCR is crucial. We will rely on your capacities in the future," he said.
IOM, UNHCR and local authorities estimate that as of April 3rd, at least 3, 000 Syrian refugees had been forced to abandon their homes in the face of increasing violence and cross the border into Northern Iraq. IOM is monitoring the situation closely to assess the needs of the displaced families. It is also working with the Bureau of Migration and Displacement of the Kurdish Regional Government to register all displaced individuals who have entered Iraq. In partnership with UNHCR, IOM is also helping to establish the basic infrastructure at Domiz camp, including the construction of a 21,000 liter water tank.
IOM is urgently seeking additional funding from the international community to help other Syrians expected to cross the border. (end) ta.rk KUNA 061109 Apr 12NNNN
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