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Government commits extra aid to Liberia

Government commits extra aid to Liberia

The Government has committed an extra £250,000 towards humanitarian needs in Liberia, on top of the £2.5m it has already contributed to the country this year.

The donation to Medical Emergency Relief International (MERLIN) has supported an airlift of essential shelter and medical supplies to the capital, Monrovia. It arrived on Saturday.

Liberia is currently ranked 174th out of 175 on the United Nation's Development Programme's Human Development Index. More than 80 per cent of the population lives on less than a dollar a day. In Monrovia basic services such as water and sanitation, health care, food and shelter for the civilian population are insufficient or non-existent. Access for humanitarian staff and supplies are currently limited due to recent fighting.

The Department for International Development has provided £1m to the International Committee of the Red Cross which has an emergency surgical team in JFK Hospital, the primary surgical centre currently operating in Monrovia. This remains overstretched with only six international staff and 200 local staff tending to over 300 patients. The main health issues among the general population in Monrovia include malaria, diarrhoeal diseases like cholera, and acute respiratory infections.

The UK government has also provided over £600,000 to Save the Children Fund for emergency health care, maternal health needs and reproductive sexual health, and £450,000 to Médecins Sans Frontières to support health care. A further £1m contribution will support the Economic Community of West African States peacekeeping operation in Liberia.

© Scoop Media

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