‘‘The relief we send doesn’t say ‘Made in America,’ but make no mistake — our aid reflects the commitment of the American people,’’ Obama said in a video announcing the addition funding, which was posted on the White House website.
The European Union also promised another 100 million euros ($134 million) for Syrian relief aid, said the EU humanitarian aid commissioner, Kristalina Georgieva, in Brussels.
‘‘They seem to be taking the appeals more seriously now when the conflict appears to be taking the shape of a crisis that will last for some time,’’ said Ayham Kamel, a Middle East analyst at the Eurasia Group in London. ‘‘Most expected the Assad regime would be toppled by now, ending the crisis. In reality, however, the Assad regime is still there and the international community has no alternative but to face the crisis and managing refugees costs money.’’
The U.N. estimates more than 700,000 Syrian refugees have fled to surrounding countries — mostly Jordan and Turkey, but others to Lebanon and smaller numbers to Iraq. At least 2 million people inside Syria have been uprooted or face shortages of food or medicine.
Laerke said the refugee figures could push toward 1 million later this year if the current exodus remains. That could reach about half the refugee figure for Iraq in the years after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion.
Amos, the U.N. humanitarian chief, said she hoped the Kuwait conference will bring ‘‘a wider range’’ aid donors than previous appeals that brought mostly Western pledges. She also is likely to stress the desperation of many in the cold months.
In Beirut on Monday, she described visiting a shelter in Damascus where many children were sick or had respiratory problems because of lack of heating fuel.
‘‘It is so cold right now, health care is really important,’’ she said.
In Jordan, about two dozen refugees moved into a school built by aid funds from Bahrain after their tents in the main camp were blown over by wind or flooded. The school is set to reopen next week.
‘‘They haven’t given us heaters, tents or trailers,’’ said Abu Mohamed, a 35-year-old businessman who fled Damascus with his family. ‘‘Rain is forecast again. Doctors tell us at the camp hospital that our children are sick from the cold.’’
Associated Press writers Dale Gavlak in Zaatari, Jordan; Raf Casert in Brussels, and Barbara Surk and Bassem Mroue in Beirut contributed to this report