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Thursday, 23 January 2014

EU airlifts more humanitarian supplies into Central African Republic

Amid the continuing crisis in the Central African Republic, the European Union is again transporting urgently needed humanitarian assistance into the country. Today, a plane ferried 80 tons of relief supplies from Nairobi, Kenya into the Central African Republic capital, Bangui, including emergency shelter, blankets and basic household items such as soap and kitchen utensils.
"The humanitarian needs created by this crisis are huge - the entire population is affected," said Kristalina Georgieva, EU Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response. "Only a few days ago we raised nearly half a billion dollars in pledges to bring yet more aid to the long-suffering Central Africans, more than half a million of whom have been uprooted from their homes in Bangui alone. We will continue to do all we can for as long as it takes." "As violence continues and the needs remain enormous, security and humanitarian access to the most vulnerable, both in and outside the capital, is an urgent priority."
The Central African Republic ranks among the world's poorest countries and has been embroiled in a decade-long armed conflict. The surge of violence in December 2013 exacerbated this situation and today half of the 4.6-million-strong population is in need of immediate aid. Almost a million people have been internally displaced, half of them in the capital Bangui alone. More than 245 000 Central Africans have sought refuge in neighbouring countries.
The EU is the largest provider of relief assistance to the country, with €76 million in 2013. Humanitarian aid from the European Commission has tripled last year to €39 million. The Commission has organised repeated airlift operations into the country to facilitate the deployment of relief material and personnel. A team of European humanitarian experts in the field is monitoring the situation, assessing the needs and overseeing the use of funds by partner organizations.

Source: European Commission

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