UK aid to Syria

16 November 2015

"Britain is already the second largest contributor to the humanitarian crisis [in Syria]—providing £1.1 billion in vital life-saving assistance."

David Cameron, 16 November 2015

The claim that the British government is the second-largest contributor of humanitarian aid to Syria is correct, according to the United Nations.

It gives details for "total funding (appeal and non-appeal) to the Syria crisis" over the past four years. At over $1.5 billion, the UK has contributed more than any other individual country bar the United States.

It's slightly less than the European Commission, which gets money from the UK through the EU budget.

This US dollar amount currently works out at less than £1 billion. But the Department for International Development (DfID) also gives the £1.1 billion figure.

The discrepancy between this and the total given by the UN may be partly down to fluctuations in exchanges rates over the past few years; the two sources also appear to be measuring over slightly different time periods. It's also possible that not all UK aid spending on Syria is recorded by the UN.

Either way, the amounts given include both money spent and money committed to be paid out soon.

According to DfID, half the funding is for humanitarian projects in Syria, and half is aid for Syrian refugees in nearby countries.

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