Published: 2017-10-10 17:19
Last Updated: 2017-10-10 17:41
The Jordanian Foreign Ministry on Monday estimated at the refugee crisis has cost the Kingdom over $1.7 billion dollars in 2017, after hosting thousands of refugees displaced from neighbouring Syria since the outbreak of the 2011 civil war.
In a statement released on social media, authorities in Jordan also estimated that $10 billion has been spent the refugee crisis since the start of Syria's 2011 civil war.
The $1.7 billion includes additional expenses in sectors including healthcare, education, security and employment, and also extra money spent on public services and subsidised food, according to the Jordanian Foreign Ministry. Water and security ranked as the highest costing expenses.
Out of some 4.9 million Syrians registered with the UNHCR in the region by mid March, around 657,000 are Syrian refugees hosted in Jordan, according to the Syria Regional Refugee Response's Inter-Agency Information Sharing Portal posted on UNHCR’s website.
However, government puts the figure far higher at around 1.3 million people.
Jordan has repeatedly called for more international help in managing the refugee crisis, and the Kingdom was recently criticised by Human Rights Watch for reportedly "summarily deporting" Syrian refugees.
"Jordan shouldn't be sending people back to Syria without making sure they wouldn't face a real risk of torture or serious harm and unless they have had a fair opportunity to plead their case for protection," said Bill Frelick, refugee rights director at HRW.
However, Minister of State for Media Affairs and Government Spokesperson Mohammad Al-Momani told Ro’ya, “the return of refugees is voluntary, and not to any place where their life can be in danger.”
According to UNHCR, 93 percent of the Syrian refugees in Jordan live below the poverty line. Around 180,000 of them are housed in two sprawling camps in the desert along the Jordan-Syria border.
Syria is the the largest refugee crisis in the world today, with 6.15 million people internally displaced and a total of 13.5 million people in Syria in need of humanitarian assistance.