The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) today welcomed its first donation from Tunisia since 1997, which will go to assist impoverished people worldwide. WFP expressed the hope that the donation would set in motion a continuing and growing partnership with Tunisia.
Tunisia donated US$100,000 to the UN frontline agency for food assistance without any conditions. Most donations to WFP and other humanitarian organizations are targeted at specific projects or countries, but the Tunisian donation is multilateral, making it possible for WFP to use the money for any of its operations facing severe shortfalls.
“We hope that this contribution will provide additional support to WFP to respond to different situations which require its intervention, especially in those under-privileged communities in the most vulnerable regions of our planet,” said Tunisian Foreign Minister, Abdelwaheb Abdallah, in a letter to WFP.
The letter was handed to WFP Senior Deputy Executive Director Jean-Jacques Graisse by Habib Mansour, the Tunisian Ambassador and Permanent Representative in Rome.
“It is always wonderful to have a non-traditional donor extending their hands to help the hungry poor, but the Tunisian donation is also remarkable because such cash donations strengthen our capacity to move faster and quicker wherever there is a need,” Graisse said.“Let us hope that we can soon build this relationship further.”
WFP, the single largest humanitarian agency in the world, is fully dependent on voluntary donations from countries, corporation and individuals. Last year, it raised over US$3 billion from donors, mainly governments, to provide food assistance to about 100 million poor people around the world.
“We are very encouraged by the dramatically increasing level of support from Arab countries. It quadrupled from its 2005 level to surpass US$81 million in 2006,” said Naila Sabra, WFP Regional Director for the Middle East, Caucasus and Central Asia.
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