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Republic of Turkey Prime Ministry Disaster and Emergency Management Authority

AFAD Chief Meets UN Assistant Secretary-General 09 December 2015

AFAD Chief Meets UN Assistant Secretary-General

AFAD Chief meets with UN Assistant Secretary-General to discuss humanitarian challenges, World Humanitarian Summit.

Ankara, 3 December 2015 – AFAD President Dr. Fuat Oktay received Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator Kyung-wha Kang to discuss the humanitarian challenges in Syria and Iraq as well as the World Humanitarian Summit 2016, which will take place in Istanbul. UN resident coordinator Kamal Malhotra and OCHA representatives were also present at the meeting.

Noting that the European Union’s 3 billion financial aid amounts to a fraction of what Turkey has spent for humanitarian relief since 2011, Dr. Oktay warned that a sustainable system, not individual assistance packages, were necessary to develop long-term solutions. “The international community cannot afford to rely on a handful of countries to address a global challenge. We must all work together,” he said.

A New Model for Syrian Employment

With regard to the issuing of work permits to Syrian refugees, Dr. Oktay stated that the primary challenge was to create jobs and employments opportunities as opposed to granting work permits. “We need to find a way to encourage big business to create jobs for refugees as a corporate social responsibility project,” he said. “Helping refugees find jobs could serve the interests of corporations, host societies and the refugee community. This is why we call on the United Nations, the European Union and G20 leaders to promote job creation packages for refugees.” In response to Dr. Oktay’s comments, Ms. Kang argued that companies might be interested in creating jobs for refugees despite the global challenge of high unemployment if the method can be shown to serve corporate interests.

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