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U.S. seeks to fill Syrian aid gap

Nov. 9, 2012 at 11:49 AM

WASHINGTON, Nov. 9 (UPI) -- The U.S. State Department announced Friday it was working to fill the gap in humanitarian assistance for those affected by the Syrian civil war.

U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Refugees Kelly Clements announced Friday her government was providing more than $34 million in humanitarian assistance for those affected by the Syrian conflict.

"The United States is aggressively pursuing all feasible options to expand the reach of humanitarian aid in Syria, utilizing both traditional and non-traditional humanitarian networks," a statement from her office read.

International Committee of the Red Cross President Peter Maurer said Thursday that despite the best efforts of the non-governmental organizations the "humanitarian situation is getting worse" in Syria.

Turkish officials said Friday that thousands of Syrians poured over the border to seek refuge from fighting along the shared border.

Clements said her office was working with the Jordanian, Turkish and Lebanese governments to help refugees there prepare for the onset of winter.

"This funding will also support the transport of wounded Syrians from the Lebanon-Syria border so they can receive the medical attention they desperately need," her office stated. "By funding critical ambulatory services in Lebanon, the United States is helping fill a clear gap in existing humanitarian assistance."

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