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The United Nations says international help is needed to feed 1.5 million people in crisis-torn Syria, but humanitarian corridors are not yet justified.
UN humanitarian chief Valerie Amos said almost three million people out of Syria's population of about 20.5 million had been affected by the deadly crackdown on protests launched by President Bashar al-Assad since March.
Thousands are now in camps in neighbouring Lebanon and Turkey, and many more have fled protest cities to seek refuge with family and friends in other parts of Syria.
"Growing needs have led the Red Crescent to request additional support to feed 1.5 million people," Amos, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator, said in a statement.
The Syrian Red Crescent and other Syrian groups and individuals have so far provided the bulk of humanitarian relief in Syria because the government has severely restricted access.
"As of now, the United Nations and partners have been unable to comprehensively assess people's needs," Amos said.
The UN official referred to a number of suggestions for setting up humanitarian corridors and safe zones.
"At present, the humanitarian needs identified in Syria do not warrant the implementation of either of these mechanisms. Before any further discussion of these options, it is essential to get a clearer sense of what exactly people need, and where," Amos said.
French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe this week suggested setting up protected escape routes for Syrian civilians fleeing the unrest, but he acknowledged that it would need either the agreement of the Syrian government or an international mandate.
The UN estimates that at least 3500 people have been killed in the crackdown since mid-March.
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