The European Commission on Thursday signed contracts with the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) totalling 14 million euro to deliver food assistance and facilitate the movement of humanitarian cargo in South Sudan. The contribution will help approximately 1.7 million people.
"The world's youngest country is on the brink of a famine because of fighting and a failed harvest. The numbers of people affected are frightening: almost seven million people are at risk of hunger. By signing these contracts now with the WFP, our biggest partner in food aid, we will save the lives of many South Sudanese people," said Kristalina Georgieva, the EU Commissioner for International Cooperation, and Humanitarian Aid, in a press release.
"Our efforts, including the deployment of rapid relief mobile teams into remote areas, organising barges to carry food along the Nile, as well as using airdrops, have provided vital support to more than 1.4 million people in June. We are very grateful for this latest contribution from the European Commission," said Ertharin Cousin, WFP Executive Director.
In addition to an increasing number of people suffering from food insecurity, over 1.5 million South Sudanese have been displaced within and outside the country, making this a regional crisis.
The European Commission is making 83.8 euro million available in 2014 to respond to the humanitarian crisis in the country as well as an additional 15 million euro to support South Sudanese refugees in the neighbouring countries, said Georgeiva.