Statement on Humanitarian Response to the Horn of Africa on the margins of the 66th General Assembly

Sep 24, 2011

(as delivered)

Baroness Amos,

Excellencies,

distinguished colleagues,

 

Even though the international community has already put in place very substantial and multifaceted humanitarian aid, significant financing gaps still remain.

 

We need both to maintain existing efforts, but also we need to further expand the circle of donors. That is why I am particularly grateful to Baroness Amos for having organized this meeting.

 

The international community has shown remarkable signs of solidarity with the people and countries in crisis. And the generosity and solidarity of Somalia’s neighbouring countries deserve our fullest respect and acknowledgement. I join others in complementing in particular Kenya.

 

As of today, the Federal Government of Germany bilaterally pledged approximately 210 million US $ to combat the humanitarian crisis on the Horn of Africa. Apart from this bilateral aid, we contribute 77 million US $ to the humanitarian assistance of the European Union and the relief efforts of the World Bank.

 

Beyond that, German citizens and the private sector have also shown great solidarity with the people on the Horn of Africa: They complemented the efforts of the Federal Government by donating approximately 140 million US $ to humanitarian NGOs.

 

With our contributions we aim to meet the most urgent needs of the affected populations. But, as has already beeen said, we will also contribute to strengthening resilience against future droughts over the medium and longer term, for example in the fields of food security and rural development.

 

However, all our contributions can only be effective if they reach their destination. Therefore, Germany urges all parties to improve humanitarian access.

 

Madame Chair, a catastrophe in this magnitude was not inevitable. Political stability and good governance could have avoided much of the misery.

 

This holds especially true for Somalia where an inclusive political solution has to be reached urgently. We are encouraged by the words that we heard today and yesterday from the Somali Prime Minister on the implementation of the agreed roadmap.

Madame Chair, I would like to express my particular gratitude and support to the African Union and its peace mission AMISOM for its determined engagement in an extremely demanding and dangerous environment. It is the best proof of the African Union’s commitment and capacities to bring about peace and security on the African continent.

 

Germany views the Horn of Africa with great concern and will remain committed. By joining efforts we can turn this humanitarian catastrophe into an opportunity to achieve change for the better and come out of the crisis stronger than before.

 

Thank you for you attention!

© GermanyUN