- UN has appealed for $35 billion to help people facing humanitarian crises.
- The organisation aims to help 160 mn. people across 56 countries by 2020
- Humanitarian crises have worsened at Yemen, Afghanistan, northeast Nigeria, South Sudan, Congo and Burkina Faso during the pandemic.
THD NewsDesk, Geneva: According to UN aid chief, the Covid-19 pandemic has played a major role in worsening humanitarian crises across the globe. The world has witnessed a 40% upswing in people needing humanitarian aid which has put more than 230 million people at threat. Going by current estimates, the world organisation said on December 1 that it needs over $35 billion to help people stuck in economic crises by 2021.
“If everyone who will need humanitarian aid next year lived in one country, it would be the world’s fifth-largest nation,” said UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock. “The pandemic has wreaked carnage across the most fragile and vulnerable countries,” he added.
The UN has charted out a plan to address 34 humanitarian crises across 56 countries for 2021, aiming to assist 160 million people financially. Currently, these people are facing adverse effects of hunger, conflict and climate change, fueled by the pandemic.
“We always aim to reach about two-thirds of those in need because others, for example, the Red Cross, will try to meet the remaining gap,” Lowcock said.
“There is a clear and present danger of really a large scale famine in Yemen now, and the single biggest reason for that is because some significant countries who provided a lot of assistance for our relief operation in 2018 and 2019 have not done that in 2020 and those are the countries of the Gulf,” he said.
Moreover, he mentioned that the UN had collected over $17 billion this year for funding humanitarian operations that have helped 70% of the people targeted.
Although collecting $35 billion feels too high a target to achieve by 2021, Lowcock feels that the amount is “minimal”, if compared to the expenses incurred by developed countries on boosting health care during the pandemic. Further, the UN aid chief highlighted the humanitarian crises that need urgent intervention. They include the famines in countries including Yemen, Afghanistan, northeast Nigeria, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Burkina Faso.
Source: ET Healthworld