Syrian refugees now exceed 1.5 million: UNHCR

Geneva, May 18 (IANS) The number of Syrian refugees, who are either registered or awaiting registration, has surpassed 1.5 million, while the actual number is much higher, according to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

The increasingly widening gap between needs and available resources is a growing challenge, reported Xinhua citing UNHCR’s spokesperson Dan McNorton Friday .

“Over the past four months, we have seen a rapid deterioration compared to the previous 20 months of this conflict,” he said.

The UNHCR had continued to respond to the emergency needs of those in need inside Syria and in neighbouring countries.

Last December, the UNHCR appealed for $1 billion to help an estimated 1.1 million refugees in the first half of 2013.

As the number has been increasing rapidly, the agency is to hold a donors’ briefing in Geneva May 28 to present revised assistance plans.

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