A conference of donor nations raised $11 billion for Syrian humanitarian needs over the next four years, British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Thursday as the event in London drew to a close.
Cameron told a news conference that donors had pledged $6 billion for this year alone, and a further $5 billion to be spent by 2020.
With Syria's five-year-old civil war raging and another attempt at peace negotiations called off in Geneva after just a few days, the London conference aims to address the needs of some 6 million people displaced within Syria and more than 4 million refugees in other countries.
Underlining the desperate situation on the ground in Syria, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu told the meeting that tens of thousands of Syrians were on the move towards his country to escape aerial bombardments on the city of Aleppo.
"Sixty to seventy thousand people in the camps in north Aleppo are moving towards Turkey. My mind is not now in London, but on our border - how to relocate these new people coming from Syria?" he said. "Three hundred thousand people living in Aleppo are ready to move towards Turkey."
Turkey is already hosting more than 2.5 million Syrian
refugees. Jordan and Lebanon are the other countries bearing the brunt of the Syrian refugee exodus.
Several speakers said that while the situation of refugees was bad, that of Syrians trapped inside the country enduring bombardments, sieges and, in some places, starvation was far worse.
"With people reduced to eating grass and leaves and killing stray animals in order to survive on a day-to-day basis, that is something that should tear at the conscience of all civilized people and we all have a responsibility to respond to it," U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told the conference.
A U.N. envoy halted his attempts to conduct Syrian peace talks on Wednesday after the Syrian army, backed by Russian air strikes, advanced against rebel forces north of Aleppo, choking opposition supply lines from Turkey to the city.
Kerry told the conference he had spoken to his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov about the situation.
"We have agreed that we are engaged in a discussion about how to implement the ceasefire specifically as well as some immediate, possible confidence-building steps to deliver humanitarian assistance," he said.
In a blunt attack on Russia, Turkey's Davutoglu told a news conference that those supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces were committing war crimes and called on the United States to adopt a more decisive stance against Russia.
نستخدم ملفات الكوكيز لنسهل عليك استخدام مواقعنا الإلكترونية ونكيف المحتوى والإعلانات وفقا لمتطلباتك واحتياجاتك الخاصة، لتوفير ميزات وسائل التواصل الاجتماعية ولتحليل حركة المرور لدينا...اعرف أكثر