BEIRUT

Middle East

UN warns of serious threat in Syria refugee crisis

Syrian refugees children play outside their tent at a Syrian refugee camp in the eastern town of Marj in Bekaa valley, Lebanon June 29, 2014. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)

GENEVA: The head of the U.N. refugee agency is warning that the spiraling refugee crisis brought on by Syria's civil war could pose a serious threat to Lebanon's security and destabilize the entire region unless donors quickly provide the unfunded 70 percent of the $3.74 billion needed for emergency needs.

Antonio Guterres says that the upwardly revised assessment of needs is based on a new estimate there will be at least 3.6 million Syrian refugees by the end of the year.

He said in a statement Thursday that donors have contributed just $1.1 billion so far toward efforts in Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt, and failure to provide more "could result in dramatic consequences for refugees and the stability of the entire region, including a serious security threat to Lebanon."

 

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