The Conference on Syria in Brussels succeeded in mobilizing pledges close to $ 7 billion (6.19 billion euros) to help refugees, but Europeans have conditioned funds for reconstruction to a credible peace process.
The European Union and the United Nations co-chaired the third Brussels Conference on Supporting the future of Syria and the region, on 12-14 March (joined declaration). 57 countries and more than 20 international organisations and UN agencies participated. The conference had two main purposes. The first objective was to support a Syrian-owned peace process led by the UN in Geneva. The second objective was to mobilise international financial support for humanitarian aid both inside the country and in the neighbouring countries.
The conference succeeded in mobilising pledges totalling US$ 7 billion (€ 6.2 billion) for 2019, and multi-year pledges of close to US$ 2.4 billion (€ 2.1 billion) for 2020 and beyond. If the EU has allocated 2 billion euros, the largest national contribution will come from Germany with 1.44 billion euros. France announced 1.1 billion over two years, the United Kingdom, 464 million, the United States, 350 million.
Federica Mogherini, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy,
insisted on the condition of « relaunching the Geneva negotiations and put an end to the war in Syria ».
France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Sweden, the Netherlands, Belgium and Denmark set an additional condition: the fight against impunity for crimes committed during eight years of war.
On 12-13 March, the 'days of dialogue' brought together more than 1000 participants: civil society representatives from Syria and the region, ministers and decision-makers from countries neighbouring Syria, donor countries, regional organisations, UN agencies, and the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. The themes of reconstruction and the role of civil society, and women in particular, were discussed.