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Cablegate: Greek Response On Urgent Support Needed for Humanitarian

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHTH #1501 2661510
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 231510Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY ATHENS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0727

UNCLAS ATHENS 001501

SIPDIS
DESK PASS TO USAID/FFP - CAROL MUTAMBA
DESK PASS TO USAID/OFDA - KASEY CHANNELL
DESK PASS TO STATE/EEB - JANET DEUTSCH
DASK PASS TO STATE/AF/E - JOEL WIEGERT

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAID PREF EAGR ET KE SO EUN GR
SUBJECT: GREEK RESPONSE ON URGENT SUPPORT NEEDED FOR HUMANITARIAN
CRISIS IN ETHIOPIA, SOMALIA, AND KENYA

REF: 09 STATE 96625; A. A)STATE 70789; B. B) SEOUL 1144
C. C) SINGAPORE 675; D. D) THE HAGUE 4750; E. E) NAIROBI 1812
F. F) ADDIS 1556; G. G) STATE 87385; H. H) STATE 58996

1. (SBU) DepEconCouns delivered reftel points on September 18 to
Dr. Nike-Catherine Koutrakou, Director of Emergency Humanitarian
and Food Aid Programs at Hellenic Aid (HA). On September 23, Dr.
Koutrakou advised DepEconCouns that the GoG has made Ethiopia and
Somalia two of its highest priority countries for assistance (in
addition to Afghanistan and the Palestinian Authority). While
Kenya is not one of Greece's high priority countries, the GoG has
allocated assistance funding to it and will continue to do so. In
addition, Koutrakou has proposed to HA's leadership that Kenya be
added to Greece's list of high priority countries. Koutrakou
advised that to date in 2009, HA has given to the World Food
Program (WFP) EUR450,000 for Ethiopia, EUR150,000 for Somalia, and
EUR300,000 for Kenya. In response to the most recent humanitarian
appeal, Koutrakou told DepEconCouns that she has proposed to
Ambassador Mercourios Karafotias, Director General of Hellenic Aid,
that Greece donate an additional EUR300,000 for these three
countries through the WFP. No decision, however, can be made on
whether and when to provide this additional assistance until a new
Greek government assumes power [Note: Greece's Prime Minister
recently called snap elections, which will take place on October 4.
End Note]. Reiterating statements made by Ambassador Karafotias to
DepEconCouns in the past, Koutrakou emphasized that Foreign
Minister Dora Bakoyannis wants HA, which falls under the MFA, to
support USG assistance priorities whenever possible. While
Koutrakou is not sure whether this policy will be continued under a
new government, if the MFA's new political leaders are put in place
in a timely fashion and agree, HA could be in a position to donate
the EUR300,000 to the WFP by mid-November.
Speckhard

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