US aid agency confirms suspension of Syria aid programs in Turkey over corruption
WASHINGTON/ANKARAThe U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has confirmed that it has halted several humanitarian aid activities in Turkey due to information received about fraud in a number of humanitarian aid programs for Syrians.
USAID has also suspended individuals and vendors from receiving USAID funding, its spokesperson, Ben Edwards, said in a statement released on May 11.
“USAID places the highest priority on ensuring that taxpayer funds are used wisely, effectively and for their intended purpose. We have a zero tolerance policy for fraud and abuse of American taxpayer resources and will take every measure at our disposal to recover misspent funds,” Edwards stated.
“USAID is working to reduce the impact of the suspension on Syrians in need of humanitarian aid by identifying alternative options for continuing the affected programs. USAID is continuing to reach people in need, and we remain committed helping Syrians during this humanitarian crisis,” he added.
A U.S. government official said the Washington has suspended millions of dollars in funding to 14 entities and individuals involved in aid programs based in Turkey. The decision followed a complex investigation into cross-border aid programs providing humanitarian relief in Syria and running from both Turkey and Jordan by multiple nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) with funds from USAID and other international donors, the Hürriyet Daily News reported on May 10.