ISLAMABAD: French Government has donated 100,000 euros (US$147,299) towards the UN refugee agency’s operation for internally displaced people (IDPs) in Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province. Tens of thousands of people have been uprooted by the unrest in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas since August. This includes over 36,000 people living in 11 camps, and 60,000 people who have so far been registered as living in rented accommodation or with host families. Numbers are expected to grow as the UNHCR-supported registration continues.
“We chose to channel the assistance through UNHCR as we have full confidence in the work it does for IDPs and refugees,” said the French Ambassador to Pakistan, His Excellency Daniel Jouanneau. He added that France had also recently donated 300,000 euros to the UNHCR ‘s programme in Afghanistan.
As part of the UN response, UNHCR is leading efforts to support the government in the areas of shelter, protection and camp management for the IDPs. Together with the Commissionerate for Afghan Refugees, the agency has helped to establish three organised camps – Kacha Garhi I and II, and Jalozai – currently hosting 12,816 displaced Pakistanis. Basic services such as shelter, food, water, sanitation, health care and education are provided in these camps.
In addition, UNHCR is supporting the authorities in eight spontaneous camps by helping to ensure basic living standards and that needs are met. Overcrowded camps are decongested by moving families to Jalozai camp.
Winterisation is underway with the distribution of supplies such as blankets and plastic sheets. By the end of November, UNHCR had distributed some 7,500 tents, 28,000 plastic sheets, 87,000 blankets, 25,000 sleeping mats, 12,000 jerry cans and 13,000 kitchen sets. UNHCR has appealed for $17 million to meet these needs under a $54-million UN Humanitarian Action Plan. France’s contribution brings to $13.29 million the total funds received by UNHCR so far.-SANA