News / Africa

Aid Organizations Struggle to Get Help to Mali

Men carry humanitarian aid in Mopti, Mali, February 4, 2013.Men carry humanitarian aid in Mopti, Mali, February 4, 2013.
x
Men carry humanitarian aid in Mopti, Mali, February 4, 2013.
Men carry humanitarian aid in Mopti, Mali, February 4, 2013.
Nancy Palus
As soldiers in Mali continue working to root out armed militants, aid organizations are navigating rivers and mined roads to bring relief to communities affected by the fighting. Some 36,000 people have fled their homes since fighting began in January, but families who stayed also need help.

Aid agencies say families in northern Mali are running dangerously low on food.
 
During a small window of calm last week, local transporters working with the U.N. World Food Program were able to get a truckload of food to Gao in northern Mali. But after renewed suicide bombings and street clashes between the military and Islamic militants in Gao, aid agencies are again on stand-by before moving more trucks northward.
 
Daouda Guirou is with the World Food Program (WFP) in Mali.
 
He says after the latest incidents in Gao, use of a road is suspended. We are all watching to see how things evolve. He says depending on the security situation, WFP hopes to be able to move supplies by road soon.
 
Aid agencies are also working to access northern Mali via Niger, but recent unrest also disrupted that plan. Another worry on the roads is mines. There have already been explosions, with a number of deaths and injuries.
 
Communities in northern Mali are heavily dependent on regional markets for staple foods. USAID’s Famine Early Warning Systems Network says that the continued disruption of trade could lead to serious food shortages.

For the Timbuktu region of northern Mali, the World Food Program is moving food to communities along the Niger River by boat. But this option is for a limited time, as the waters will soon recede.
 
Of the about 36,000 people who have fled their homes in northern Mali, some have headed for other parts of the country, others over the borders to Burkina Faso, Mauritania, or Niger.
 
Their number adds to the some 400,000 Malians displaced over the past year.
 
Karl Nawezi is project manager for Doctors Without Borders in Mauritania, where some 68,000 Malians have sought refuge - about 14,000 of them since January. Just back from a refugee camp near Mauritania’s border with Mali, he said thousands of newly arrived refugees remain without tents and other basic supplies.
 
Health experts are worried about diarrheal infection and cases of severe malnutrition in the camp.
 
He says the Malians in Mauritania, Niger and Burkina Faso are totally dependent on outside assistance, and the international community must not forget the people in these camps.
 
The U.N. has launched an appeal for $373 million to assist the men, women and children affected by the conflict in Mali; so far it is funded at just over 3 percent.

You May Like

Video Experts Warn World Losing Ebola Fight

Doctors Without Borders says world is losing battle against Ebola, unless wealthy nations dispatch specialized biological disaster response teams More

Video Experts: Rise of Islamic State Significant Development in Jihadism

Many analysts contend the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years More

US-Based Hong Kongers Pledge Support for Pro-Democracy Activists

Democracy advocates call on Chinese living abroad to join them in opposing new election rules for their home territory More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearancei
X
Elizabeth Lee
September 02, 2014 8:57 PM
Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearance

Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Experts See Rise of ISIS as Significant Development

The Islamic State’s rise seems sudden. It caught the U.S. by surprise this summer when it captured large portions of northern Iraq and spread its wings in neighboring Syria. But many analysts contend that the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years. VOA's Jela de Franceschi takes a closer look at the rise of ISIS and its implications for the Middle East and beyond.
Video

Video Israel Concerned Over Syrian Rebels in Golan

Israeli officials are following with concern the recent fighting between Syrian rebels and government forces near the contested Golan Heights. Forty-four U.N. peacekeepers from Fiji have been seized by Syrian Islamist rebels and the clashes occasionally have spilled into Israel. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.

AppleAndroid