WFP Receives €5.8 Million From The European Union To Support Sahrawi Refugees In Algeria

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The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has received a €5.8 million (US$ 6 million) humanitarian grant from the European Union (EU) to cover the basic food needs of Sahrawi refugees living in Tindouf in southwest Algeria.

The EU’s contribution comes at a critical time when WFP’s funding needs for Algeria have reached an all-time high in 2022. Earlier this year, WFP was already forced to reduce the size of rations distributed in the camps over a period of six months, from March to August, due to a lack of funds. Today, rising food prices are still outpacing new funding.

“This new financial contribution shows European solidarity with the Sahrawi refugees, who are dependent on humanitarian aid for their survival,” said European Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarčič.

“The EU calls on other donors to increase their financial allocations for food assistance to avoid a new reduction in food rations and an increase of malnutrition,” Janez added.

The EU’s grant will help WFP provide vulnerable refugees with food rations that include cereals, pulses, vegetable oil and sugar. WFP will also provide pregnant and nursing mothers as well as children under five with specialized nutritional assistance to treat and prevent malnutrition.

“We are extremely grateful to the EU for stepping up its support to WFP during this crucial time. But regrettably, the needs remain enormous. Additional funding from other donors is vital to bring an appropriate response to this emergency.” said WFP Representative and Country Director in Algeria Imed Khanfir.

The EU is the largest donor to WFP in Algeria. Since 2003, the total EU contributions supporting WFP’s operations for Sahrawi refugees in the country have reached nearly €85 million (US$105 million). This year, the EU’s support accounts for almost 20 per cent of WFP’s funding needed in Algeria.

WFP has been supporting the Sahrawi refugees in Algeria since 1986. WFP’s operations in the country are carried out and monitored in collaboration with national and international organizations to ensure food assistance reaches the people for whom it is intended.

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