In this Monday, Jan. 11, 2016 photo, people wait to leave the besieged town of Madaya, northwest of Damascus, Syria. (AP Photo)
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Despite the huge demand for emergency aid stemming from the conflict in Syria, the building blocks for its people's future should be put in place at the same time as the provision of humanitarian relief, senior U.N. officials said Thursday.Stephen O'Brien, the United Nations' Emergency Relief Coordinator, said a major international conference on the Syria crisis, scheduled for Feb. 4 in London, will not only try to raise significant new funding to help conflict-hit Syrians inside and outside the country right now.Aid agencies say some 13.5 million people inside Syria need humanitarian assistance, including 6.5 million displaced from their homes.One way to shrink the growing needs for humanitarian funding, with the United Nations now asking for around $20 billion per year, is to coordinate the two types of aid, even though that may be hard in violent, unstable places, she said.
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