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UNHCR commissioner due in Jordan Tuesday

By Khetam Malkawi - Jan 12,2015 - Last updated at Jan 12,2015

AMMAN — UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres is due in Jordan on Tuesday after postponing a visit that was scheduled last week.

The UN official's visit seeks to mobilise the international community to further help Jordan as it hosts Syrian and Iraqi refugees, according to UNHCR Jordan.

During his visit, Guterres will also launch the “Home Visit Report” about the situation of Syrian refugees hosted in the Kingdom and hold a press conference on Wednesday.

According to the
UNHCR website, the agency’s financial requirements for the region to deal with the Syrian crisis and provide humanitarian assistance for refugees are set at $1.89 billion. 

As for Jordan alone, UNHCR needs $404,432,393 according to the agency.

Despite the shortage in funds that the UNHCR received, the agency has already started working on its winterisation programme and provided the needed equipment for Syrian refugees before the snowstorm that hit Kingdom over the past week. 

The agency said in a statement that it has distributed a total of 217,530 blankets, 90,350 of which are high thermal blankets and 127,180 medium thermal blankets. 

A total of 138,180 blankets were distributed to camps, with 53,180 going to Azraq and 85,000 to Zaatari. Off-camp locations received 79,350 blankets for distribution, according to the UNHCR.

The agency said it has distributed 109,130 blankets since last Thursday, adding that 31,000 refugee households of all nationalities received UNHCR winterisation cash assistance.

The winterisation campaign started on November 14, 2014, said the UNHCR, which had set a budget of $16.5 million for the winterisation response. 

According to government figures, there are more than 1.4 million Syrians in Jordan and only 620,000 of them are registered with UNHCR. 

Although Syrians constitute the majority of Jordan’s refugee population, the agency said there are also 30,000 Iraqis registered as refugees with UNHCR in the country.

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