UN Humanitarian Chief welcomes Sweden’s contribution to the Horn of Africa crisis
(Stockholm /Geneva/New York, 9 December 2011): Under-Secretary-General and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Valerie Amos, welcomed Sweden’s announcement of an additional US$10 million contribution to the Horn of Africa crisis.
“The Horn of Africa region continues to face the largest humanitarian crisis in the world, with four million people in need of urgent humanitarian aid in Somalia alone. Sweden’s contribution is vital if we are to sustain the fragile progress made this year,” emphasized Valerie Amos at the end of a two-day visit to Sweden.
Thanks to the generosity of donors like Sweden, the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) was able to provide more than $127 million to aid agencies in the Horn of Africa, helping to kick-start life-saving assistance like emergency food, clean water, and treatment for severely malnourished children, while other sources of funding were still being sought.
“I have visited the Horn of Africa twice since the crisis escalated this summer. What I saw made me even more determined that we must do all we can to break the vicious circle of recurring humanitarian crises in the region. Humanitarian assistance is getting through to the people who need it most - and scaling up the delivery of help to people in Somalia has lifted three regions out of famine,” noted Gunilla Carlsson, Swedish Minister for International Development Cooperation. “More financial contributions are needed.
But we also need to make sure that the assistance is as effective as possible. That is why Sweden is a large donor to OCHA – we know that coordination saves lives.”
This year Sweden has contributed US$123 million to the Horn of Africa. Sweden plays a key role in the humanitarian field and is the second largest donor to the CERF, as well as to OCHA, allocating $32.5 million to the organization in 2011.
During her visit, USG Amos also met the Director-General of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), Charlotte Petri Gornitzka, members of Sweden’s Parliament and representatives of the Swedish humanitarian NGO network.
Ms. Amos took part in a public debate on the humanitarian crisis in the Horn of Africa alongside Minister Carlsson, the President of the Swedish Red Cross, Eva von Oelreich and the UNHCR regional representative, Pia Prytz Phiri.
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit http://unocha.org/.