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Korea continues to support WFP in providing emergency food assistance to Syrians in need

CAIRO – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has received a contribution package totalling US$1.5 million from the Government of the Republic of Korea to help provide food assistance for conflict-affected Syrians in Jordan and Turkey.

WFP has also received US$1 million from the Republic of Korea for the second instalment of its 2020-2021 contribution to Lebanon — that is part of a US$3.8 million package WFP received from Korea in December 2020 to provide assistance for Syrians inside their country and in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey.

In Turkey, US$1 million from Korea will help WFP equip Syrian refugees with the skills they need to find job opportunities and become self-reliant through vocational and paid on-the-job training. These funds will also represent a lifeline for approximately 52,000 refugees living in six camps across south-eastern Turkey through a monthly assistance of TRY 120 (US$17) per person.

In Jordan, food security levels among Syrian refugees living in communities have dropped by more than ten percentage points since 2019; in March 2021, close to a quarter of refugees were food insecure and 60 percent on the edge of food insecurity. Korea’s US$500,000 contribution for Jordan will support WFP in providing monthly assistance to more than half a million vulnerable Syrian refugees and refugees of other nationalities in Jordan.

This assistance is provided through cash-based transfers; through blockchain in the three Syrian refugee camps, and as cash for refugees living in communities across the country.

In Lebanon, with US$1 million as the second allocation of ROK’s 2020-2021 contribution, WFP will provide monthly cash assistance for refugees in Lebanon, ensuring that families who have a hard time getting by are provided with the assistance they need to meet their daily nutrition requirements.

“These funds from the Government of Korea could not have been more timely as the COVID-19 pandemic and the consequent economic downturn has pushed hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees in the region deeper into need and desperation, unable to meet their own needs, forcing them to become more dependent on WFP assistances,” said Gordon Craig, WFP’s Deputy Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa. “Life has become an even harder daily struggle for more than 5 million Syrian refugees, who have little or no financial resources.”

The number of vulnerable refugees who lack the basic resources to survive in exile has surged dramatically as a result of the public health emergency. Loss of income has pushed refugee families to the edge. Many are unable to pay their rent and are forced to take on additional debt, cut down on food and medication.

To date, Korea has contributed over US$20 million to WFP's response to the Syrian regional crisis in the past decade. Korea has become a major donor that has a growing portfolio in the regional crisis.

The Syria response is one of WFP’s largest and most complex emergencies worldwide. Each month, WFP provides food assistance to some 6.5 million Syrians inside and outside Syria. Syrian refugees remain the largest refugee group in the world.

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The United Nations World Food Programme is the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.  We are the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.

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For more information please contact (email address:

Youjeong Kim, WFP/Seoul,
Tel. +82 2 722 7398

Eunjeong Lee, WFP/ Seoul,
Tel. +82 2 722 7395

Dara ElMasri, WFP/Amman,
Mob. +96 279 013 7267

Melissa Loukieh, WFP/Turkey,
Mob.: +90 537 912 17 47