The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has airlifted additional shelter supplies and blankets to Darfur in western Sudan. These airlifts are part of the United States' response to the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Darfur.
The five new airlifts began arriving in Nyala in South Darfur last week. The first four of these flights contained 2,500 rolls of plastic sheeting from USAID's pre-positioned stockpiles in Dubai, enough to provide shelter for about 160,000 people. A fifth flight, which was offloaded in Nyala Tuesday, contained 20,000 blankets. USAID staff on the ground in Nyala have been meeting the planes and overseeing arrangements for the items to be distributed through implementing partners in the field.
The total value of these commodities is almost $1 million, including transportation costs. This is in addition to four USAID airlifts earlier this month that contained supplies including enough plastic sheeting to provide shelter for nearly 90,000 people. The value of the first four airlifts was some $750,000.
"It is essential that the victims of this conflict who have been displaced from their homes have shelter before the rainy season begins in June," said Roger Winter, USAID Assistant Administrator for Democracy, Conflict and Humanitarian Assistance. "The supplies we have airlifted into Darfur this month should be able to provide shelter for almost a quarter of a million people."
According to the United Nations, the crisis in the western Sudanese region of Darfur is currently the worst humanitarian and human rights catastrophe in the world. The U.N. has estimated that, out of a pre-conflict population in Darfur of 6.5 million, approximately one million people have been internally displaced within Sudan and more than 120,000 people have fled across the border into neighboring Chad as a result of this conflict. To date, the USAID and U.S. Department of State have provided nearly $95 million in humanitarian assistance for the crisis in Darfur in western Sudan, including over 81,000 metric tons of emergency food assistance. (menareport.com)
© 2004 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )