U.N. seeks money to help Syrian refugees

Oct. 2, 2012 at 4:10 PM

GENEVA, Switzerland, Oct. 2 (UPI) -- The United Nations says $500 million is needed to support Syrian refugees, whose numbers have tripled in three months, a United Nations report said Tuesday.

More than 300,000 Syrians have fled Syria since armed conflict broke out between the national army loyal to President Bashar Assad and rebel forces seeking his ouster 18 months ago.

The U.N. refugee agency has called on the international community to donate nearly $500 million to help care for Syrian refugees, whose numbers could top 700,000 by year's end.

"Many refugees and the communities hosting them are already running out of resources," said Adrian Edwards, spokesman for the Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees.

The situation is particularly dire as winter approaches with many of the refugees living in tents. Overnight low temperatures can approach freezing, Edwards noted.

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