Syria's neighbours request help with refugees

Updated: Thursday, 05 Sep 2013 14:02

Syria's neighbours are appealing for stronger international support to help them care for almost two million refugees who have fled their homeland.

Officials from Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey warn they will soon reach the limit of their ability to assist the refugees without outside help.

The UN, which hosted the ministerial meeting in Switzerland, is calling on the international community to assume greater responsibility for taking care of displaced Syrians.

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres said the four nations are paying a heavy price.

He said the impact of such a large number of refugees on their economies is something that needs to be fully recognised by the international community.

Ministers from the four nations have promised not to close their borders to newly-arriving refugees.

Lebanon's Minister of Social Affairs Wael Abi Faour said his country, which has 720,000 Syrian refugees, is committed to protecting them.