The United Kingdom has pledged a fresh £10 million (Rs 1.58 billion) in aid to Nepal to help provide life-saving health services in the districts affected by the April 25 earthquake and aftershocks.
The new relief package was announced on Wednesday by visiting British Secretary of State for International Development Justine Greening during her meeting with Prime Minister Sushil Koirala.
With this latest support, UK’s assistance to Nepal in the wake the April 25 earthquake has reached over £33 million pounds—the largest aid to the relief operation.
The aid will be mobilised through different international agencies, including those of the UN, for the treatment of 18,000 people injured in the crisis, rebuilding of 1,000 damaged health facilities, immunisations for 3,000 children and access to family planning for 48,000 women, the British Embassy said in a statement.
The remaining resources will ensure that key partners are prepared to respond in the event of another crisis and will be able to deliver good quality health services to vulnerable women and children, it added.
During the meeting, Greening also took up the matter of Chinook helicopter with PM Koirala.
Nepal had turned down British requests to allow the helicopters to fly into Nepal from India on the technical grounds. Greening told the prime minister that Chinook will be instrumental for carrying food and other logistic to the remote districts during monsoon, the PM’s Private Secretariat said in a statement after the meeting.
The British Secretary, however, said the matter would not affect the ties between the two countries.
She said that the British government is ready to assist Nepal in its plan for rebuilding and reconstruction once “we get the post disaster need assessment from the Nepali side”, the secretariat added in the statement.
n British Secretary of State for International Development Justine Greening (2nd right) visits the hunanitarian staging area at the airport in Kathmandu on Wednesday. Post Photo: Nimesh J Rai
US announces additional $9 million
The United States government on Tuesday announced an additional $9 million in assistance dedicated to earthquake response and recovery efforts in Nepal. The announcement brings the total amount of US humanitarian assistance for the disaster to nearly $47 million, including $32.5 million in funding from USAID and $14.3 million from the US Department of Defense.
The new funding will provide additional emergency shelter materials, safe drinking water, hygiene kits, and improved sanitation to the most critical districts, the US Embassy in Kathmandu said in a statement. It will also support programmes to address psychosocial needs and the protection of earthquake survivors, including women and children.
“The US Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs will also provide an additional $1.7 million in equipment that will assist the law enforcement and justice sectors in Nepal to recover from the earthquake,” read the statement. “This equipment will include approximately 75 weather-resistant tents to serve as centres of operation for police and justice personnel to support Nepali citizens, including those in earthquake -affected areas.