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United States providing humanitarian assistance in response to devastating Sri Lanka MV X-Press Pearl cargo ship fire

News and Press Release
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For Immediate Release
Thursday, June 10, 2021
Office of Press Relations

The United States, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), is providing $100,000 in immediate assistance to support response efforts to the devastating Sri Lanka cargo ship fire. The cargo ship, MV X-Press Pearl, which began sinking on June 2, discharged plastic debris and chemical waste into the surrounding waters near the capital city of Colombo, endangering coastal resources and the livelihoods of nearby fishing communities.

With this funding, USAID is providing this assistance to the World Food Programme to deliver immediate support to families whose livelihoods were affected by this emergency and expand ongoing support for response coordination and management. USAID will continue to work with partners on the ground to support immediate relief efforts.

USAID has a long-standing partnership with Sri Lanka including to strengthen its disaster management and emergency response capabilities. USAID also supports a number of partner organizations to help communities better prepare for and recover from disasters. Additionally, USAID supports the U.S. Forest Service to train disaster management professionals across South Asia, including in Sri Lanka, on the Incident Command System (ICS)—a standardized crisis management system designed to help communities more effectively respond to disasters.

For the latest updates on U.S. humanitarian assistance in Sri Lanka, click here.