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IP/09/973

Brussels, 19 June 2009

Commission allocates €8 million for refugees and drought victims in Kenya

Ahead of World Refugee Day (20 June), the European Commission has allocated €8 million in humanitarian aid to help vulnerable people in Kenya, including Somalis in the Dadaab refugee camp. Dadaab is now the largest refugee camp in the world. The funds are channelled through the Commission's Humanitarian Aid department (ECHO) under the direct responsibility of Louis Michel, Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid.

Louis Michel said: "On the eve of World Refugee Day, it is important to highlight the enormous humanitarian challenge we face in tackling the suffering of millions of refugees and uprooted people worldwide. Their basic rights should not be forgotten. The Commission is fully engaged on their side and deploys considerable resources to bring them relief, and improve their living conditions.”

He added: “I am particularly concerned about the way the situation is developing in Dadaab. The camp was designed for 90,000 people and has now become the biggest of the world, hosting a staggering 275,000 refugees! With the resumption of fighting in Somalia, arrivals are soaring and the pressure on services has reached breaking point."

Today’s funding decision for Kenya involves at least €4 million for direct support to refugees in Dadaab with the remainder for drought-affected populations in the country. The aid will include food, healthcare, water/sanitation facilities, basic household items and shelter.

For further information please see

http://ec.europa.eu/echo/aid/sub_saharian/kenya_en.htm

which includes picture story from the Dadaab camp.


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