ESAT News (August 3, 2017)
The Trump administration announced more than $169 million in humanitarian assistance to Ethiopia and Kenya to support people affected by prolonged severe drought.
Ethiopian regime officials have been saying that they would use available local resources and funds meant for development projects if the international community did not step in to help the drought affected people. Officials were also playing down the severity of the drought crises and the widespread cholera epidemic, especially in the Somali region of Ethiopia.
The additional funding, including nearly $137 million in Ethiopia and nearly $33 million in Kenya, brings the total U.S. humanitarian contribution in Ethiopia and Kenya to more than $458 million in Fiscal Year 2017, the USAID Press Office said in a press release.
The USAID said in Ethiopia, the new assistance includes a contribution of more than 111,000 metric tons of relief food aid for approximately three million people. “An estimated 7.8 million people require urgent humanitarian assistance throughout Ethiopia, where the USAID-funded Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) signals that, without immediate and sustained assistance, food insecurity could reach catastrophic levels for some families in the worst-affected areas,” the humanitarian agency said in a release.
“This additional aid comes at a critical moment. In addition to severe hunger, acute watery diarrhea is spreading in drought-affected regions, which presents a deadly triple threat of hunger, malnutrition, and dehydration, in addition to the displacement of affected populations.”
The U.S., one of the largest donors to Ethiopia and Kenya, also called other humanitarian donors, to address the growing needs of people affected by the drought.