UN appeals for record $3.1B in aid for crisis-hit children

GENEVA - The UN children's agency has launched $3.1 billion appeal - its largest ever - Thursday to help 62 million children at risk in humanitarian crisis worldwide. 

More than one in 10 of the world’s 230 million currently live in countries and areas affected by armed conflicts alone, according to UNICEF. 

"I have just returned from Syria and Lebanon where millions of children have had their lives torn apart," said Afshan Khan, UNICEF’s director of emergency programs, in a statement. 

“For the past four years, these children have been witnessing violence and death daily and have been missing out on the very basics in life," she added. 

Children affected by deadly natural disasters, brutal conflicts and fast-spreading epidemics across the world are facing a new generation of humanitarian crises, warned UNICEF. 

This year's appeal is $1 billion higher than last year.

The biggest portion of the appeal -- $903 million -- is for Syria and the sub-region to protect children at risk and deliver life-saving assistance like immunisations, safe water and sanitation, and education.

UNICEF is also seeking $32.45 million for conflict-hit Ukraine as the country faces a humanitarian crisis with 5.2 million people living in conflict zones, over 600,000 people internally displaced.

The appeal also includes $500 million in aid for the Ebola-affected communities and under-funded and forgotten crises where children are in desperate need including Afghanistan, Palestine, Nigeria and Niger.

Copyright © 2015 Anadolu Agency