AMMAN, Jordan, 20 April 2011 – A ship carrying UNICEF life-saving supplies reached the port of Misrata in western Libya today.
“Children in Misrata need urgent protection,” said Shahida Azfar, UNICEF Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa. “This latest batch of supplies will provide for their basic needs, but their long term recovery will only begin when the fighting stops.”
The new items will benefit 15,000 to 25,000 people and include first aid kits, drinking water, water-purification tablets, hygiene kits and recreational toys for children. They were delivered on a UNICEF-chartered boat that left Barcelona on 16 April.
Two weeks ago, UNICEF delivered emergency surgical materials, obstetric surgical and midwifery tools, and hygiene kits to Misrata. UNICEF has also been providing psychological support in the East.
Additional supplies are also available on the Tunisian and Egyptian borders to meet the needs of those who have fled the fighting inside Libya. To date, it is estimated that more than 500,000 people have fled Libya to neighbouring countries. While most of them are migrant workers, more and more Libyans are crossing the borders seeking safety.
In Misrata and other areas affected by the fighting in Libya, humanitarian access remains a major concern and UNICEF has called for safe, unfettered access to the populations in need.