UN steps up relief efforts in response to further flooding in Mozambique

News and Press Release
Originally published
The United Nations sent today a second coordination team to strengthen the relief efforts in Mozambique, where further flooding along the Save river valley and in Inhambane and Gaza provinces have exacerbated the already critical situation. Mozambican authorities say as many as 17,000 people currently need to be rescued.
The five-member UN Disaster Assessment Coordination Team was dispatched by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, which yesterday issued a report on the deteriorating situation and urgent funding requirements, and is in the process of sending a second airlift of relief items from its warehouse in Pisa. The UN World Food Programme released today $2 million to support the rescue operation.

UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has asked Ross Mountain, the Assistant Emergency Relief Coordinator, to travel immediately to Mozambique to serve as his Special Humanitarian Envoy to the country. Mr. Mountain is to oversee and support the UN Country Team in coordinating relief efforts.

Mr. Annan has also authorized the release of resources from an emergency fund - the Central Emergency Revolving Fund (CERF) - to reinforce the work of UN agencies in Mozambique.

A donor meeting will be held tomorrow in Geneva to highlight the requirements outlined in the 23 February UN Inter-agency Appeal, as well as determine what is needed to rescue and assist the new flood victims. Mr. Annan urged the donor community to respond urgently to the worsening situation.