Norway to provide USD 20 million in emergency aid to South Sudan
OSLO, Norway, February 9, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Norway is providing USD 20 million (NOK 150 million) in emergency aid to the civilian population in South Sudan. 'Nearly 6.5 million South Sudanese have been affected by the humanitarian crisis that has resulted from the violent political power struggle in South Sudan. Norway wants to support the civilians who are now suffering. At the same time, we will continue to urge the country's leaders to put the needs of the people first, to bring an end to the conflict and find political solutions that will benefit the country in the future,' said Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende.
The UN and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) are holding a humanitarian donor conference for South Sudan in Nairobi today, at which State Secretary Hans Brattskar is participating. Norway's contribution will be channelled through NGOs, the Red Cross system and UN humanitarian organisations. Norway is also providing support through the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF).
'This is one of the most severe humanitarian crises we have seen in our time. This conflict is compounding an already difficult situation for the population. The UN estimates that the need for humanitarian protection and assistance will continue to rise in the time ahead,' Mr Brende said.
Since the conflict in South Sudan broke out in December 2013, approximately two million people have been forced to flee their homes, including 750 000 children.
'Peace between the parties and an end to the hostilities are essential for ensuring that emergency relief reaches those in urgent need of protection, food, drinking water, medical help and shelter. It is very disappointing that the parties have shown no willingness to agree on key issues that could bring the peace process to a successful conclusion. We would like to point out once again that the country's authorities are responsible for ensuring the security of their own population and for dealing with the humanitarian consequences of this man-made crisis,' Mr Brende said.
Mr Brende recently had a meeting with the parties to the conflict in Addis Ababa, where he emphasised that an agreement is long overdue. At the signing of the preliminary peace agreement last week, the parties once again appeared to show no genuine willingness to find a political solution to the conflict by resolving issues relating to the division of power and a transitional government.