11/10/2012 - The European Commission has decided to increase its humanitarian aid for the Horn of Africa by €30 million, particularly for Ethiopia and Somalia to help a million people in urgent need of humanitarian assistance. The new funding comes from the Commission's Emergency Aid Reserve (EAR) and brings the total humanitarian financial contribution from the Commission for the region to €162 million this year.
The primary goal is to support immediate life-saving activities with an important share of these funds dedicated to helping build the resilience of vulnerable communities to withstand future disasters. By promoting long-term solutions to the Horn of Africa's chronic problems (drought risks, insecurity, weak communal ability to withstand shocks, precarious livelihoods) the new funding will target local communities and those displaced by conflict and hunger.
The Humanitarian Aid Commissioner Kristalina Georgieva made the announcement in Tokyo during a visit to Japan where she is highlighting the EU's new resilience strategy.
"Thanks to sustained humanitarian assistance and better weather conditions, the situation in the region has improved but more than nine million people in the Horn of Africa still need food, shelter, water and protection. There are more than 1.5 million internally displaced people and 1.2 million refugees in the region,” said Kristalina Georgieva, European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid, Civil Protection and Crisis Response.
"Our main goal is to help vulnerable people to survive but we can best do this by also strengthening their resilience and helping prepare them to be ready for when the next disaster inevitably strikes,” Commissioner Georgieva stressed.
In Ethiopia, the number of people in need of humanitarian aid has increased by 16 per cent since the beginning of this year and more than 100,000 people have been affected by recent flooding. Over two million people have insufficient food in Somalia and depend on humanitarian aid. In addition, Ethiopia hosts more than 368,000 refugees from neighbouring countries and Somalia has more than 1.3 million internally displaced persons in the country.