International donors, on Thursday March 14th, pledged nearly $7 billion in aid for 2019 for civilians caught up in Syria's bloody civil war. However, the total falls short of what the UN says is needed.
EU Humanitarian Commissioner, Christos Stylianides, announced the total at the end of a three-day conference of 80 countries and organisations in Brussels, on the eve of the eighth anniversary of the start of the conflict, according to AFP.
The European Union led the pledges with two billion euros, but the conference failed to drum up the $9 billion the United Nations said was needed to help the millions of Syrians forced to flee the country as well as those facing a humanitarian crisis at home.
European powers reiterated that progress on a UN-led peace process must come before they will release funds to rebuild Syria, although they have dropped their insistence that President Bashar al-Assad must go.