UNHCR's Guterres thanks Kuwaiti Emir for US$110 million donation

News Stories, 6 May 2013

© UNHCR
High Commissioner António Guterres meets His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah.

KUWAIT CITY, Kuwait, May 5 (UNHCR) UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres has visited Kuwait and personally thanked the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, for an unprecedented donation of US$110 million for UNHCR's emergency operation for Syrian refugees.

Guterres met His Highness Sheikh Sabah in Kuwait's Bayan Palace on Sunday and conveyed UNHCR's deepest gratitude for the funding, which was announced recently in Geneva as part of donations totaling almost US$300 million to UN organizations by Kuwait. It is the largest single donation ever given to UNHCR by an Arab nation.

"This generous and timely donation by Kuwait has provided a breathing space for UNHCR to address the enormous challenges and has allowed us to provide life-saving assistance to Syrian refugees," Guterres said.

He added that the donation showed "the wise leadership of His Highness the Emir of Kuwait and the generosity of the government and people of Kuwait and reflects international humanitarian solidarity in its finest form."

The High Commissioner also expressed appreciation for Kuwait's prominent humanitarian role in the region and for its support for UNHCR and the refugee agency's work over the years.

During his visit, Guterres also met Sheikh Sabah Al-Khalid Al-Sabah, Kuwait's deputy prime minister and minister of foreign affairs, as well as Barjas Al-Barjas, head of the Kuwait Red Crescent Society, and Sheikha Fariha Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, head of the Kuwait Society for the Ideal Family. He thanked them for their support.

The number of Syrian refugees registered or awaiting registration in the region stands at almost 1.47 million persons. UNHCR is working closely with the host countries and its partner to provide protection and life-saving assistance to the refugees.