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Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Floods in West Africa: EC aid for emergency assistance

The European Commission is to provide €3 million to relieve the most urgent needs of victims of the severe flooding that hit West Africa in early September. Particular attention will be paid to the inhabitants of Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso. Almost 150,000 people have been affected by the floods. The funding is to be managed by the Commission’s Humanitarian Aid department (ECHO) under the direct responsibility of Commissioner Karel De Gucht. A fact-finding mission by a Commission humanitarian aid expert found that 150 000 people were affected to varying degrees. Most of them came from poor neighbourhoods. The funds are to be spent on the distribution of food, medical supplies and essential items such as mosquito nets and on setting up emergency shelters, repairing homes and re‑establishing market gardening. ECHO's partners – United Nations agencies, NGOs and the Red Cross – are in the field and distribution is already under way. Depending on further developments, more operations could be funded, particularly in Niger, which over the last few days has also been the scene of large-scale floods.

Source: European Commission