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NZAID contributes to Haiti appeal

NZAID contributes to Haiti appeal

New Zealand will contribute $100,000 to the United Nations, to help fund a project to reduce violence and protect citizens in the Caribbean nation of Haiti.

New Zealand will contribute $100,000 to the United Nations, to help fund a project to reduce violence and protect citizens in the Caribbean nation of Haiti.

The UN is appealing for US$35 million from the international community to meet humanitarian needs in Haiti, following the departure six weeks ago of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

Aid Minister Marian Hobbs said the absence of functioning state services, following President Aristide's departure, had left the country in complete disarray and Haitians were in urgent need of aid.

"Haiti has suffered from armed violence, and a lack of security forces, leaving civilians vulnerable and unprotected," Marian Hobbs said. "Public services, such as hospitals, schools and police stations, have been destroyed, and access to food is limited."

Marian Hobbs said the recent political crisis was compounded by years of poverty and political dysfunction.

In early March, the UN launched a 'flash appeal' to kick start social services and economic recovery in Haiti. Urgent needs are for food, water and sanitation, and public security.

The $100,000 will come from NZAID, and will be a one-off contribution. NZAID is the government's international aid and development agency.

The funds will be used for a UN Development Programme project "Emergency support for violence reduction and creation of safe havens in Haiti".

ENDS


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