World
US juggling 'too many' humanitarian crises worldwide
Publish Date: May 02, 2014
US juggling 'too many' humanitarian crises worldwide
The US is coordinating some $67 million in humanitarian aid for Central African Republic this year. PHOTO/AFP
  • mail
  • img
newvision

WASHINGTON - The United States is contending with too many global humanitarian crises at once to comprehensively fund relief efforts, the State Department told Congress Thursday, urging other nations to step up.

The aid landscape this year looked particularly challenging given the emergencies in South Sudan and the Central African Republic (CAR), where brutal rebellions and ethno-religious violence have left thousands of people dead, displaced millions and pushed countless more to the brink of famine.

"Thanks to Congress, we have appropriations to do more this year, but as you know we are contending with too many humanitarian emergencies," Assistant Secretary of State Anne Richard, who oversees population, refugees and migration issues, told a House hearing on the CAR.

Some 2,000 people have been killed and nearly a million displaced since ethnic and religious strife swept the Central African Republic in late 2013, according to the State Department.

It is coordinating some $67 million in humanitarian aid for CAR this year, and in mid-April the United Nations called for $274 million to address humanitarian needs in the region related to the crisis there.

But the donor community risks its aid being spread too thin on the ground.

"Unrest in CAR is happening at the same time as upheaval and violence in South Sudan and widespread conflict in Syria," Richards told a House Foreign Affairs subcommittee on Africa and global health.

Other major crises demanding world attention: continuing unrest in Ukraine, Mali's refugees, the aftermath of the Philippines' devastating typhoon, renewed violence in Darfur, and war-weary Afghanistan.

"It's a very difficult situation," with key aid groups like World Food Program stretched thin, said Richard, who travelled to CAR in April and heard testimonies from victims of brutal, spiralling violence.

Congressman Christopher Smith, who chairs the subcommittee, complained that some aid groups operating in CAR were doing so on an "absolute shoestring," and that it was imperative to boost funding to such groups.

Richard said expanding the donor pool -- such as in the Syria conflict, when Gulf states engaged on the humanitarian front -- was a priority.

"We would like to see more countries who haven't been traditional donors join us," she said.

Congress appropriated $1.3 billion for total US Agency for International Development operations for 2014, about $215 million less than the 2013 level.

AFP

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Another US journalist beheaded by IS
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said Wednesday the world was "outraged" at the apparent beheading of a second US journalist....
US airstrikes target Al Shabaab leader
THE US State Department lists Godane as one of the world's eight top terror fugitives, with a $7-million reward for information on him...
New UN rep for S.Sudan warns of
The new UN chief for South Sudan arrived in the conflict-wracked country Tuesday, a week after gunmen shot down a UN helicopter....
Nuns go public for first time in 150 years
A group of Ecuadoran nuns opened the doors of their convent to the outside world Saturday - a first since the order arrived in the South American country 150 years ago....
Obama’s cool-in-a-crisis style – asset or liability?
Obama''s cool-in-a-crisis style and disdain for the impulsive use of military force is fueling criticism of his leadership....
Ukraine rebels prepare attack as EU warns Russia of new sanctions
Pro-Russian separatists were preparing a fresh offensive on a key coastal location in eastern Ukraine on Sunday, as EU leaders gave Moscow one week to curb its support for the rebels or face new sanctions....
Do you think banning the sale of single cigarette sticks will help regulate tobacco production?
yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter