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UN appeals for record $16bn in aid


12-09-2014 07:42 BJT

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The United Nations has appealed for a record 16.4 billion US dollars to provide aid to nearly 60 million people worldwide next year, in its biggest-ever annual request.

Valerie Amos, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, and Emergency Relief Coordinator:

"We revised our appeal upwards, asking for 17.9 (b) billion (US dollars) to help people in 31 countries. So again, a rise from 12.2 (b) billion (US dollars) at the beginning of the year to 17.9 now. In the plans that we are launching today, a combined 78 million people are considered in need of humanitarian assistance, and we aim to respond to the urgent needs of 57 million of them."

Amos says Syria, South Sudan, Iraq, and the Central African Republic will remain the top priorities, with over 40 percent of the appeal going to help over 18 million people affected by the war in Syria alone.

The appeal comes after the World Food Programme launched a 72-hour campaign on earlier this month to raise one US dollar contributions from 64 million people around the world so it can restore food vouchers to 1.7 million Syrian refugees.

The UN agency announced on December 1st that it was suspending aid to Syrian refugees because of a funding shortfall.

According to the UN, there were over 100 million people worldwide in need of aid at the end of last month.

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