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Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Commissioner Georgieva pledges support for African governments

To act fast, to give generously and to work together are the essential conditions for containing the famine, refugee and drought crises in the Horn of Africa. But African countries must also take long-term measures, with the support of the international community, to ensure that drought does not equal famine again.

These were the main messages that Kristalina Georgieva, the EU Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, delivered at “The International Pledging Conference on Drought and Famine situation in the Horn of Africa”, convened by the African Union in Addis Abeba. Commissioner Georgieva represented the European Union, which is the largest donor of humanitarian assistance in this emergency.

“I salute the African Union for addressing this crisis. Drought cannot be avoided, but hunger can - this is why it is essential that the immediate measures are combined with long-term support for sustainable livelihoods,” Commissioner Georgieva said.

The AU conference gathered African governments and international donors with the aim “to provide an African response to an African problem”. Commissioner Georgieva was one of the keynote speakers at the event and was due to hold bilateral meetings with Jean Ping, the AU Chairperson, Meles Zenawi, the Prime Minister of Ethiopia, and Mohamed Abdulahi Mohamed, the Prime Minister of Somalia.

Source: European Commission