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20 Mar 2012 description

Sri Lanka today donated 10,000 mertic tons of rice to the World Food Programme which will be sent to Ethiopia, where tens of thousands of refugees have fled, after devastating drought contributed to famine in Somalia last year.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa made a symbolic hand over of the rice to WFP's Acting Country Director Ms. Azeb Asrat at Temple Trees this morning.

This is the first ever donation from the Government of Sri Lanka to WFP's food operations abroad and the first shipment of 500 mertic tons is scheduled to leave Colombo port in the next few days.