Tuesday, May 19, 2009

AusAID: Australian Assistance to Somalia


Medeshi
AusAID: Australian Assistance to Somalia
May 19, 2009
Australia will provide $2 million to support efforts to restore peace to Somalia after almost two decades of conflict and humanitarian crises.
The United Nations estimates that over half the population of Somalia is in need of humanitarian assistance and that one in six Somali children under five is acutely malnourished.
Essential services have collapsed and around 1.3 million Somalis are displaced.
Australia will contribute:
- $1.5 million to the United Nations Humanitarian Appeal
- $500,000 to the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).
The UN's humanitarian appeal for Somalia is 70 per cent underfunded - the worst shortfall of any UN appeal. This is having a major adverse impact on the provision of essential services, including education and health, to Somalis affected by conflict, economic collapse and famine.
Maternal and infant mortality rates are amongst the highest in the world, and women and children are most vulnerable to violence. Australia's contribution to UN agencies will support vital health services for women and children, and security for humanitarian workers so that they can deliver aid to the people who most need it.
Australia's contribution will also support AMISOM's operations in Somalia, including the provision of medical support and supplies to local communities.
Australia commends the African Union for its commitment to improving security in Somalia through AMISOM and contributing to the improvement of the humanitarian situation. It faces a challenging mission helping Somalia's Transitional Government stabilise the situation in the country and has paid a heavy price in the lives of personnel lost on duty.
Resolution of the conflict in Somalia is essential to relieve the humanitarian crisis and strengthen stability in the Horn of Africa. It will help tackle the root causes of Somalia-based piracy, which continues to threaten shipping and maritime security in the Gulf of Aden and off the East African coast.

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