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Five years of conflict have changed the face of the Syrian Arab Republic. The numbers are eloquent. An estimated 2.3 million people, 11.5 per cent of the country’s population, have been killed or wounded, thousands more are under arrest or unaccounted for, 6.5 million are internally displaced and 6.1 million have sought refuge in neighbouring countries. Gross domestic product (GDP), which in 2010 stood at $60.2 billion, is now at $27.2 billion (2010 prices), representing a contraction of 55 per cent. Total losses incurred in five years of conflict are estimated at $259.6 billion. Destruction of housing and infrastructure is estimated at around $90 billion. The total area under cultivation has fallen by 40 per cent and one third of the population inside Syria does not have food security. No economic sector has been spared and the impact of sanctions has been considerable. More than 80 per cent of the population is living below the poverty line (28 per cent in 2010). Millions are deprived of the essential necessities of life: 13.5 million are in need of human assistance and 12.1 million lack adequate access to water, sanitation and waste disposal. Around half of Syria’s hospitals have sustained serious damage. According to one estimate, life expectancy dropped from 70 in 2010 to 55.4 in 2014. Thousands of schools have ceased to operate and an estimated 2.7 million school-age children are out of school inside and outside Syria, with the rate of primary enrolment down from nearly 100 per cent in 2010 to 60 per cent today.

Related Subject(s): Human Rights and Refugees
Sustainable Development Goals:
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