The European Commission has allocated €9.5 million in humanitarian aid to help flood victims in Bangladesh, India and Nepal. Emergency experts from the Commission's Humanitarian Aid department, ECHO, have been in the flood affected areas, liaising with relief agencies on operations to be funded. The emergency relief focuses on the distribution of food rations and the provision of drinking water, emergency shelter and healthcare, in particular to prevent outbreaks of water-borne diseases. The next step is to assist the recovery of livelihoods, damaged housing and water-sanitation facilities. The emergency funds are channelled through ECHO under the responsibility of Louis Michel, the European Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid.
Commissioner Michel said: "Many Europeans have experienced flooding in recent years and we know how important it is to get rapid assistance in such a terrible situation. Our thoughts are with those who have lost homes, livestock and livelihoods or, even worse, relatives or friends - but not just our thoughts: The European Commission has taken strenuous action to provide humanitarian assistance to the victims. We have immediately dispatched our emergency experts to assess the most urgent basic needs and to liaise with other international relief agencies. On the basis of their assessment, we have decided to allocate €9.5 million in emergency aid."
By early August, over five million households were affected by the floods in India and over one million families in Bangladesh. In Nepal, over 350,000 people have been displaced from their homes. In the three countries damage includes loss of standing crops, serious erosion of farmland and property, destruction of livestock, foods and tools, as well as the contamination of surface water supplies, wells and latrines.
Commission-funded humanitarian aid projects are implemented by non-governmental relief organisations, specialised UN agencies and the Red Cross/Red Crescent movement. ECHO has a regional support office in India's capital, New Delhi, and field experts based in Bangladesh and Nepal. They closely follow developments in the humanitarian situation and play an active role in the local coordination of relief efforts. They also monitor the use of the Commission's relief funds.
For further information Contact:
Claire Barrault (Regional Information
Officer ECHO Delhi):
email@example.com - + 91 98 71 39 60 99