News / Europe

    UN Humanitarian Chief Appeals for Aid

    FILE - In this photo provided by the United Nations, Valerie Amos, U.N. Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, briefs journalists, March 28, 2014
    FILE - In this photo provided by the United Nations, Valerie Amos, U.N. Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, briefs journalists, March 28, 2014
    Lisa Schlein
    A senior U.N. official says millions of people caught in crises are unable to get the aid they need due to a lack of funding.  The U.N. says most of these crises are potentially explosive and could erupt into regional conflicts.  

    The United Nations has appealed for a record $16.9 billion to assist 54 million people in 28 countries this year.  Nearly half the year has passed and only 30 percent of that money, or $5.2 billion has been received.

    U.N. humanitarian chief Valerie Amos says people should do the math and they will see the difficulties aid agencies face.  While contributions are slow in coming, she says, there is no let up in humanitarian crises, which are expanding in scale and depth.

    She cites Syria, the Central African Republic, and South Sudan as the three top-level crises.  She says Syria is the biggest of the three, with more than nine million internally displaced people and nearly three million refugees in neighboring countries in need of help.

    Amos tells VOA it is still too soon to tell what impact the recent violence in Iraq and the takeover of the city of Mosul will have on humanitarian operations in Syria.

    “One of the border crossings that we have been looking at as a possibility of getting aid from Iraq into Syria is one of the border crossings that is now controlled by ISIS as a result of the recent action...  But, at the moment, we have a major concern about how we can deal with the huge amount of displacement that we have seen in the last few days just as a result of the fighting in Mosul,” said Amos.

    The United Nations estimates one half million people have fled Mosul, about 300,000 to Kurdistan.  

    Meanwhile, Amos says urgently needed protection and basic relief for some 2.5 million men, women, and children in the Central African Republic is at risk.  

    She says the situation is becoming more critical by the day in South Sudan, where 1.5 million people have been uprooted by violence in the past six months.

    “With the onset of the rains, cholera has broken out and malaria is taking its toll on children and on adults alike.  Aid agencies have just released a new plan to help 3.8 million people in South Sudan by December with emergency health care, food, clean water, sanitation, and shelter.  There is no time to waste if we are to avoid a famine later in the year,” she said.

    Amos says she is pleased a recent fund raiser in Oslo managed to raise $600 million for South Sudan.  She says if access improves and funding continues, aid agencies can make a difference.

    You May Like

    Escalation of Media Crackdown in Turkey Heightens Concerns

    Critics see 'a new dark age' as arrests of journalists, closures of media outlets by Erdogan government mount

    Russia Boasts of Troop Buildup on Flank, Draws Flak

    Russian military moves counter to efforts to de-escalate tensions, State Department says

    What Take-out Food Reveals About American History

    From fast-food restaurants to pizza delivery, here's what the history of take-out food tells us about changes in American society

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Processi
    X
    Katherine Gypson
    July 27, 2016 6:21 PM
    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video A Life of Fighting Back: Hillary Clinton Shatters Glass Ceiling

    Hillary Clinton made history Thursday, overcoming personal and political setbacks to become the first woman to win the presidential nomination of a major U.S. political party. If she wins in November, she will go from “first lady” to U.S. Senator from New York, to Secretary of State, to “Madam President.” Polls show Clinton is both beloved and despised. White House Correspondent Cindy Saine takes a look at the life of the woman both supporters and detractors agree is a fighter for the ages.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video First Time Delegate’s First Day Frustrations

    With thousands of people filling the streets of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for the 2016 Democratic National Convention, VOA’s Kane Farabaugh narrowed in on one delegate as she made her first trip to a national party convention. It was a day that was anything but routine for this United States military veteran.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora