EU sends Pakistan $7.5 mn to help conflict victims

May 14th, 2009 - 6:39 pm ICT by IANS  

Taliban Brussels, May 14 (DPA) The European Union (EU) Thursday gave Pakistan 5.5 million euros ($7.5 million) in aid to help civilians driven from their homes by the country’s assault on the Taliban.
The emergency donation is intended to provide refugees from the fighting in Pakistan’s restive Swat Valley and surrounding areas with shelter, food, basic utensils and medical supplies.

In some places, it will also fund clean drinking water and improved sanitation, the EU’s executive, the European Commission, said in a statement.

The money will be channelled through relief agencies such as the Red Cross and Red Crescent, the UN’s High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) and the World Food Programme, the statement said.

According to the UNHCR, half a million Pakistanis have been left homeless by fighting between government forces and the Taliban since a peace deal broke down at the end of April.

In all, over one million civilians are thought to have fled their homes in Pakistan’s troubled frontier provinces with Afghanistan since the beginning of the year.

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