Britain allocates one billion pounds for Syrian refugees, host countries

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Syrian refugees fill bottles of water at a makeshift settlement in Bar Elias town, in the Bekaa valley

DUBAI (Reuters) – Britain said on Tuesday it has allocated 1 billion pounds ($1.24 billion), including 160 million pounds of new money, to help Syrian refugees displaced by six years of civil war and countries that host them.

International donors are expected to pledge billions more dollars in aid for Syria at a two-day conference in Brussels from Tuesday that the European Union says must also help prepare for an eventual end to the war.

Prime Minister Theresa May, who was in Saudi Arabia after a visit to Jordan, will focus the extra British funds on creating jobs and providing education for the refugees, the government said in a statement sent by its Middle East Media Hub in Dubai.

The funds include 840 million pounds of pledges made at a Syria aid conference in London in February last year.

With millions of people displaced within Syria and in neighboring countries, the United Nations has appealed for $8 billion of aid this year, looking to Gulf states as well as European donors.

(Writing by Sami Aboudi; editing by John Stonestreet)

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