Ethiopia: China Commits U.S.$6 Million for People Hit By Drought

Rahima Dadafe, a 23-year-old mother of four, is holding her youngest son, Nebiyu Jemal, age 1. She says the family is surviving on food assistance from the government, along with the special nutritious food from WFP to help baby Nebiyu recover from malnutrition. “When the rain stopped raining, our crops failed and our livestock started dying because there was no grass for them to feed on. I had three cows. They all died. Now we are {living on} the assistance from the government.” she said.

The government of the People's Republic of China has pledged six million dollars to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) to assist refugees and people suffering from drought in the Somali Regional State in Ethiopia.

With the six million dollars contribution, WFP will be able to support 350,000 people living either in refugee camps or drought-affected communities. The contribution will be used for the procurement of over 4,000 metric tonnes of rice and 800 tonnes of vegetable oil in the space of two months.

Over the last two years, China has contributed a total of 14 million dollars for WFP nutrition, relief and refugee programmes in Ethiopia, according to Samir Wanmali, acting WFP country director in Ethiopia.

China has come forward to demonstrate its solidarity with the Ethiopian people, said Tan Jian, Chinese Ambassador to Ethiopia.

An estimated 7.8 million people in Ethiopia currently require emergency food assistance. WFP's focus is the Somali Region, where it plans to feed 1.8 million people.

Ethiopia hosts the second largest number of refugees in Africa, with more than 900,000 refugees from Eritrea, South Sudan, Kenya, Sudan, and Somalia. About 650,000 refugees live in camps and depend on food assistance from WFP.

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