New York, US (PANA) - The UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) on Friday said it is providing US$20 million to help alleviate the suffering of Sudanese civilians who have fled conflict and hunger and sought refuge in South Sudan
The UN Under Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Ms. Valerie Amos, who made this known, noted that nearly 170,000 Sudanese refugees have fled the conflict in Sudan’s South Kordofan and Blue Nile states.
Many more were on their way to South Sudan, but once they got to South Sudan, tens of thousands of refugees were struggling for survival, Ms. Amos said in a statement.
She also said people were dying of preventable diseases due to dangerous and overcrowded conditions, adding: “We need the international community to work together so that we can respond effectively to the crisis.”
The UN official noted that the money from the fund would help address an already dire situation,
which had further deteriorated over the past month as scarce resources had been stretched and humanitarian organizations had struggled to cover a rapidly growing population.
The funds will go towards projects to help an estimated 65,000 people, including 13,000 children under the age of five.
OCHA noted that the cost of humanitarian operations in South Sudan was particularly high, due to the almost total reliance on imported goods and services, as well as poor road and river transport networks.
Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile states, which lie on the border between Sudan and South Sudan, have been the scene of fighting between Sudanese forces and members of the former rebel movement that fought for the independence of South Sudan.
The area has also been subject to rising levels of malnutrition and worsening food shortages.
The statement also disclosed that more than US$10 million would go to the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to ensure that all refugees had better access to clean water and adequate sanitation, shelter, and health care services.
It said that other agencies that would benefit from the latest allocation included the World Food Programme (WFP), the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), which would use the money to scale up and extend access to vital maternal and reproductive health services.
Launched in 2006 and managed by UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), CERF enables the fast delivery of life-saving assistance to people affected by natural disasters and other crises worldwide.
It is funded by voluntary contributions from Member States, non-governmental organizations, the private sector and individual donors.
In a related development, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has appointed Toby Lanzer of the United Kingdom as his Deputy Special Representative in the peacekeeping operation known as the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS).
He will also serve as UN Resident Coordinator, Humanitarian Coordinator, and Resident Representative of the UN Development Programme (UNDP).
Lanzer, who brings to the position varied experience in development, humanitarian affairs and peacekeeping, replaces Lise Grande of the US.
-0- PANA AA/MA 28July2012