In view of the acute humanitarian crisis in Zimbabwe Federal Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier decided today (8 December) to make available to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) one million euro for emergency operations.
The ICRC will use the money to provide hospitals and rural health stations, for example, with medical supplies such as rehydration solutions, infusion sets, antibiotics and protective clothing. Hand pumps will also be repaired to ensure urgently needed supplies of clean drinking water.
According to United Nations figures, over 500 people in Zimbabwe have died and over 12,000 been taken ill in the current outbreak of cholera in the country. The cause of the epidemic is the virtually complete collapse of Zimbabwe's economy and health services, which has left the population dramatically short of drinking water and medical care.
With this latest increase, the German Government's emergency aid for Zimbabwe in 2008 now totals nearly 6 million euro. These funds are also being channelled to German non-governmental organizations such as Misereor, HELP or Ärzte ohne Grenzen e.V. (Médicins sans Frontières, Germany) to provide health stations with emergency medical supplies.The Federal Foreign Office stands ready to provide further funding if necessary. For further information on humanitarian assistance provided by the Federal Foreign Office please consult: