UNITED NATIONS, March 15 (Xinhua) -- As the crisis in Syria enters its third year, UN officials on Friday warned that civilian suffering is growing and humanitarian needs are mounting, while funds are rapidly running out, said the deputy UN spokesman Eduardo del Buey.
Radhouane Nouicer, the UN Regional Humanitarian Coordinator for the Syria crisis, said that protection obligations under international humanitarian law continue to be ignored by the parties to the conflict, and the challenges confronting the humanitarian community continue to mount.
"Nouicer said that shelter, water, food, basic supplies and health care are all precarious, and there is almost no place in Syria deemed to be safe. Syrians have no idea when, or if, they will have a normal life again," said the deputy spokesman at the daily news briefing here.
Syria has been torn by violence since the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad began in March 2011. Up to 70,000 people have died, more than 1.1 million have fled to neighbouring countries, 2 million have been internally displaced and up to 4 million are in need of humanitarian assistance, according to UN figures.
The health infrastructure in Syria has been severely disrupted, as well as its health care workforce and availability of medicine and supplies. More than one-third of public hospitals are out of services at a time when there are many injured who need assistance, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
"The UN and its partners are undertaking one of the largest humanitarian aid efforts, in monetary terms, in the history of the United Nations," said the deputy spokesman, stressing that some activities will not get off the ground or will simply stop because of lack of funding.
At an aid conference held in Kuwait in January, the international community pledged 1.5 billion U.S. dollars to respond to the humanitarian crisis resulting from the conflict for the first six months of this year.
So far, the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) has only received 30 percent of funds required to cover the basic needs of all refugees, according to statistics.