Somalia is affected by a severe drought that has ravaged large swaths of the Horn of Africa, leaving an estimated 13 million people in need of humanitarian assistance. . 
Photo: UN Photo/Stuart Price.Somalia is affected by a severe drought that has ravaged large swaths of the Horn of Africa, leaving an estimated 13 million people in need of humanitarian assistance. . Photo: UN Photo/Stuart Price

UN summit on Horn of Africa

9/27/2011 // During a mini-summit on famine in the Horn of Africa, Norwegian State Secretary Espen Barth Eide announced that Norway has made an additional NOK 300 million (USD 52 million) available to the UN, Red Cross and other organizations that are present in the worst affected areas.

Norway has already provided NOK 320 million (USD 55,5 million) to mitigate the disaster which is caused in part by climate and weather conditions, but first and foremost by politics. 
 
"Although the disaster in essence is caused by political reasons that require political solutions, we cannot stand idly by while thousands of children risk starvation every day. That’s why we also provide big contributions in terms of humanitarian aid," said State Secretary Espen Barth Eide.
 
In his speech at the UN the State Secretary stressed the following points:

  • Norway considers it crucial that aid is brought to people where they live and where they want to remain. Therefore, everything must be done to improve access and the security of humanitarian workers who risk their lives to help others.
  • The international community, including the United Nations, must now be present in Somalia, especially in the capital, Mogadishu, and must coordinate better. There are an encouraging number of donors from the region, but these must also collaborate with the UN and be coordinated in a joint international effort.
  • Norway welcomes the recent political progress and the weakening of the Al-Shabaab militia is welcome. We support the interim government's roadmap for the political solution.

"Follow the roadmap and we are with you, said Mr. Eide at the UN conference," which was led by Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.
 
Prime Ministers of Somalia and Kenya, the president of Djibouti, the Foreign Minister of Ethiopia and the UN emergency relief coordinator Valerie Amos also participated, at the head of ministers from some thirty countries. World Bank president was on the video link from Washington, where he announced that the World Bank increases aid to the Horn of Africa with USD1.9 billion dollars. In total the Horn of Africa mini-summit ended with more than $200 million of new aid pledges


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