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US pledges more sh226b towards refugees in Uganda

By Chris Kiwawulo

Added 11th July 2017 03:50 PM

The funds are part of the nearly $639m (sh2.3 trillion) in additional humanitarian assistance that the US government pledged on July 8, as a demonstration of its ongoing commitment to providing life-saving assistance to those affected by conflict globally.

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The funds are part of the nearly $639m (sh2.3 trillion) in additional humanitarian assistance that the US government pledged on July 8, as a demonstration of its ongoing commitment to providing life-saving assistance to those affected by conflict globally.

The US government has pledged an additional $62.7m (sh226b) in humanitarian support to people living in Uganda as a result of conflict in their cradle land.

The funds are part of the nearly $639m (sh2.3 trillion) in additional humanitarian assistance  that the US government pledged on July 8, as a demonstration of its ongoing commitment to providing life-saving assistance to those affected by conflict globally.

The $62.7m will go towards supporting the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and World Food Program (WFP) refugee assistance operations in Uganda, a statement from the US Embassy in Kampala said.

“Upon the conclusion of the G20 summit in Germany, and following the June 23 Uganda Solidarity Summit on Refugees, the U.S. government announced this contribution, which will provide emergency food and nutrition assistance, medical care, and protection to the millions of people affected by food insecurity and violence in South Sudan, Nigeria, Somalia, and Yemen,” the embassy noted.

Since October 2016, the US has provided $187.4m (sh675.5b) in humanitarian assistance to address the refugee situation in Uganda. The total U.S. humanitarian assistance for the crises in South Sudan, Kenya, Somalia, and Yemen now exceeds $1.8b since the beginning of fiscal year 2017.

The US government noted that the refugee situation in Uganda has reached crisis proportions, adding that as of July 2017, there were some 1.3 million refugees in the country – including nearly 1 million who have sought safety from violence in South Sudan – as well as refugees from Burundi, the DRC, and elsewhere.

This influx, the US said, has put increased pressure on the government of Uganda, local hosting communities, and international relief organizations to provide food, shelter, protection, water, and other basic services.

The US observed that both WFP and UNHCR face significant funding gaps and are struggling to keep up with the rising demands of a growing refugee population – leading to food shortages and wider insecurity.

“The United States remains the single largest donor of humanitarian assistance in the affected areas of Uganda. And as this crisis has grown, so have our contributions,” said U.S. Ambassador to Uganda Deborah Malac.

“But the United States cannot continue to shoulder this responsibility alone. As needs continue to arise, the rest of the international donor community – particularly those who do not historically respond to humanitarian crises – must contribute more to prevent a broader disaster. The lives of millions, both refugees and the Ugandans hosting them, depend on additional support and assistance.”

The US is one of the largest donors of humanitarian assistance in all four crises and the largest single donor of humanitarian assistance in the world.

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