Red Cross calls for extra USD 19 million for Darfur
The humanitarian organisation is appealing for the extra funding of USD 19 million in aid to help Darfur refugees.20 May 2008
GENEVA - The Red Cross called Monday for an extra USD 19 million in aid to help refugees in Darfur in western Sudan.
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said it needed the extra funding to assist 130,000 refugees in Gereida camp, one of the biggest facilities for displaced people in Darfur.
The Red Cross said it needed the money as it was prolonging its operation there. It had hoped to hand over control to other aid agencies in July but ongoing insecurity meant no-one had yet stepped in.
"Our aim is to increase our focus on helping vulnerable people in remote rural communities in Darfur. However, our discussions with various organisations interested in working in the camp have not yet produced a final agreement," said Daniel Duvillard, head of ICRC operations for the Horn of Africa.
The organisation has been the main humanitarian agency at the camp since December 2006 when deteriorating security and attacks on humanitarian workers forced almost all other organisations to leave.
Numbers have swelled at the camp with an additional 9,000 people arriving since the end of 2007. Most fled their homes because of violence, lawlessness and insufficient access to drinking water, basic health care and other services.
The ICRC has more than 300 staff at Gereida working alongside Sudanese Red Cross volunteers.
The extra funding brings its 2008 budget for Sudan to USD 121 million.
[dpa / Expatica]