Somalia: Iranians donated USD 43mln to Somalis

Published: October 14, 2011

Secretary General of Iran’s Red Crescent Society (IRCS) says that Iranians have contributed USD 43 million in cash to the relief efforts underway in famine-stricken Somalia, Press TV reported.
“Iran’s people have donated 430 billion [Iranian] Rials (about USD 43 million) to the famine-stricken people of Somalia,” Zaher Rostami was quoted by IRNA as saying on Thursday.
He added that the money had either been deposited to the IRCS bank accounts or delivered to the public funds set up in cities and towns across Iran towards the humanitarian goal.
Rostami described the amount as unprecedented compared to the ones previously collected by the IRCS in assistance to foreign disaster-stricken countries.
He added that, apart from the financial aid, the Islamic Republic had sent 5,700 tons in humanitarian assistance to the crisis-hit Horn of Africa nation.
The Islamic Republic has also set up 11 relief camps in the Somali capital of Mogadishu as well as a permanent medical center and six makeshift field clinics across the country.
Somalia has been hardest-hit by, what is described as, the worst drought to inflict the Horn of Africa in 60 years.
The UN has declared famine in six regions in southern Somalia, warning that the natural disaster would spread to all the eight regions of the country’s south.
Drought and famine have together affected more than 11.8 million people across the country as well as in Kenya and Ethiopia.
According to the United Nations, it is estimated that a quarter of Somalia’s population of 9.9 million are now either internally displaced or living outside the country as refugees.
Despite an increase in international relief aid for Somalia, hundreds of people, half of them children, are losing their lives on a daily basis, according to the world body.

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