The government of China has provided, Tuesday, six million USD financial supports targeted to provide timely food assistance to drought-hit Ethiopians and refugee communities Ethiopia has been hosting at various sites.
Chinese Ambassador to Ethiopia, Tan Jian, told The Ethiopian Herald that the financial support was made to show China's solidarity as Ethiopia strives to mitigate drought, and host refugees heading to the country from neighboring countries.
"Ethiopia and china have centuries old relations. This political and economic relation is still strong and intact. The strong bondage of the two countries is not only restricted at the economic and political issues. Their strong bondage has gone far to humanitarianism issues as well," he added.
The ambassador appreciated Ethiopia's effort in hosting refugees, adding: "The international community should collaborate to support the efforts."
He said China has come forward to demonstrate its solidarity with Ethiopia in several ways. And the financial aid is part of this fraternity, he added.
Citing Chinese adage: 'When disaster strikes, help should come from all sides,' he said the international community should share the responsibility.
Commissioner of Ethiopia National Disaster Risk Management Commission, Mitiku Kassa, also said that the support is an indication of solidarity from the Chinese government and people to Ethiopia.
"As long as we are living with adverse effects of climate change, drought is obvious. In this regard, we need more support from China, not only in the humanitarian intervention part but also in resilience building, especially in the livestock, agriculture, education, water and sanitation and other sectors."
With the 6 million USD from China, WFP has planned to support 350,000 people living either in refugee camps or in drought-affected communities for two months with over 4,000 metric tons of rice and 800 tons of vegetable oil, it was noted.
Appreciating Chinese government support, WFP's Acting Country Director, Samir Wanmali said: "China is a very important partner for the Ethiopian government and it's also a very important partner for WFP. We are very proud to be part of a partnership that is a bigger partnership between the two very important countries in the world."
WFP and the UN refugee agency UNHCR have recently appealed for 80 million USD to provide food assistance for refugees located in Ethiopia, saying that the amount of food that refugees receive was cut by 20 percent last year below the 2,100 kilo calories per day required to sustain the average person.