Given the dramatic humanitarian situation in Côte d’Ivoire, the Federal Foreign Office has been instructed by Federal Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle to increase its emergency aid by one million euro. The money will be used to supply the basic needs of the civilian population in the Abidjan region as well as internally displaced persons and refugees in other parts of the country or in border areas.
The outbreak of fierce fighting between supporters of President Outtara, the winner of the recent elections, and his predecessor Gbagbo, has caused a huge increase in casualties among the civilian population. According to United Nations figures, over 500 people have been killed and around one million displaced. In the Abidjan region alone over 500,000 people have been forced to flee their homes.
The additional funds will be channelled to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and German non-governmental organizations.
Since the beginning of the year the German Government has provided some 3.3 million euro to help people affected by the conflict in Côte d’Ivoire. The funds have been made available to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) as well as the World Food Programme (WFP) and other organizations.