UNHCR Somalia emergency airlift to arrive in Mogadishu on Monday morning
A UNHCR Somalia emergency airlift to Mogadishu is scheduled to arrive in the Somali capital on Monday morning (11:00), August 8th. It will be the first airlift undertaken by UNHCR Somalia to Mogadishu in five years.
The airlift of almost 2,500 Emergency Assistance Packages (EAPs) - plastic sheeting for shelter, sleeping mats and blankets, jerricans for water and kitchen utensils to collect and cook food - is the first of three planned flights over the coming days. The second flight is scheduled to arrive on Thursday 11th with the third to follow next week.
The UNHCR-chartered Ilyushin IL-62 cargo plane will bring more than 31 metric tons of shelter material and other aid items from UNHCR's emergency stockpile in Dubai for displaced Somalis living in the capital. An estimated 100,000 Somalis, driven by drought and famine, have fled to Mogadishu over the past two months alone in search of food, water, shelter and other assistance. There were already over 370,000 internally displaced people (IDPs) in Mogadishu before this current wave of displacement.
"This airlift of emergency assistance items will allow us to continue delivering aid to those displaced by drought and famine," said UNHCR Somalia Representative Bruno Geddo. "However, we need the funding support to continue to enable us to replenish our emergency stocks inside Somalia as they are being rapidly depleted as we deliver much-needed aid across southern Somalia," he added.
On the funding front, UNHCR has been encouraged by the initial response of governments and private donors to its emergency appeal. But UNHCR still faces a critical shortage of funds for our emergency operations in Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia and Djibouti. Unless new funds are swiftly committed, this shortfall will impact vital humanitarian assistance for tens of thousands of Somali refugees and internally displaced people.
UNHCR has appealed for US$145 million to provide protection and emergency needs for the refugee crisis in the Horn of Africa until the end of the year. To date, it has either received or has firm projections for USD$ 65 million. This amount covers less than 45 per cent of identified needs. UNHCR is calling on donor countries, private sector and individuals to urgently come forward and contribute towards closing the existing funding gap.
For further information, please contact UNHCR Somalia Public Information Officer Andy Needham on:
Nairobi: +254 733 120 931
Mogadishu: +252 699 31 66 65