Sri Lanka pledges USD 50,000 to assist Rohingya refugees

Sri Lanka has made a pledge of USD 50,000 to assist Rohingya refugees, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said.

OCHA said the international donor community had announced pledges for more than US$360 million to urgently ramp up the delivery of critical humanitarian assistance to Rohingya refugees and host communities in Bangladesh.

Funding was also pledged for the humanitarian response inside Myanmar where violence, insecurity and growing humanitarian needs have sent nearly 600,000 Rohingya from the northern Rakhine state into Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh since 25 August.

“Humanitarian donors have expressed their solidarity and compassion with the families and communities in need. These very generous pledges must now quickly translate into life-saving relief for the vulnerable refugees and support to host communities who have been stretched to the limit,” said Mark Lowcock, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator.

A ministerial-level pledging conference was held in Geneva on 23 October. Co-hosted by the European Union and the Government of Kuwait, and co-organized by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and OCHA, it aimed to raise the necessary resources to enable the humanitarian community to meet the most urgent needs of Rohingya refugees who sought shelter and safety in Bangladesh.

The Government of Bangladesh, local charities and volunteers, the UN and NGOs have been working around the clock in recent weeks to help the stateless refugees who depend on humanitarian assistance for food, water, shelter, health services and other essentials.

The UN and partners have launched a response plan for six months (Sept 2017 – Feb 2018) to meet the needs of a combined 1.2 million newly arrived and existing refugees and their Bangladeshi hosts. The appeal requests $434 million. (Colombo Gazette)

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