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AUS: Additional Emergency Assistance For Timor


MEDIA RELEASE MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS ALEXANDER DOWNER

AA 61 21 September 1999

The Australian Government will provide additional funding of $4 million to assist the many hundreds of thousands of people in both West and East Timor who have been displaced or affected by the recent violence.

The Government continues to be extremely concerned about the condition and fate of displaced people in East and West Timor. We are working quickly to deliver emergency relief, protection and support. An improvement in the security situation across East Timor following the deployment of INTERFET will enable aid agencies to provide urgently-needed assistance to the hundreds of thousands of people.

This additional funding will be used to transport emergency relief supplies to East Timor, including through the use of ADF and commercial charter aircraft and shipping. It will also assist non-government organisations that are working to help people displaced by the conflict.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) will receive $500,000 to assist its work in providing protection for displaced people and the reunification of families in both East and West Timor.

Australian non-government organisations such as CARE Australia, Community Aid Abroad/Oxfam, Australian Red Cross and World Vision will each receive $250,000 to support their work in delivering rapid and effective emergency relief to displaced people in East and West Timor.

Australia, through its overseas aid agency, AusAID, is working closely with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) and other agencies such as the World Food Programme (WFP) and United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in supporting the relief operation.

This contribution is in addition to the extensive work that Australia is already undertaking to support humanitarian relief activities for the people of East Timor, including the purchase of emergency supplies such as food and shelter materials, assisting the work of United Nations relief agencies, and setting up a large-scale logistical operation in Darwin.

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