The Federal Foreign Office has made a total of 500,000 euro available to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to provide emergency aid for those forced to flee their homes in Côte d’Ivoire.
The money will be used to supply much needed items such as blankets, kitchen utensils and emergency accommodation as well as to provide access to clean drinking water and basic medical care.
Since the November 2010 presidential elections in Côte d’Ivoire, there have been continuing violent clashes between the security forces of Laurent Gbagbo, the incumbent who lost the election, and supporters of president-elect Alassane Ouattara. Almost 20,000 people are now internally displaced as a result, and over 30,000 more have fled to neighbouring countries, principally Liberia. Tensions remain high, so it is not unlikely that these numbers will continue to rise.
This Wednesday (9 February), Federal Foreign Minister Westerwelle is sending the Director General for African Affairs, Walter Lindner, to Abidjan for political talks.