SECRETARY-GENERAL ASKS UN EMERGENCY RELIEF COORDINATOR
NEW YORK, 8 February (UN Headquarters) -- Following is the text of a statement made today by the Office of the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:
The Secretary-General remains deeply concerned over the rapidly worsening humanitarian situation in Afghanistan, following reports from the Humanitarian Coordinator, Erick de Mul, who returned yesterday from a visit to Kandahar and Herat, along with members of the Afghanistan Support Group. The Secretary-General has, therefore, requested the Emergency Relief Coordinator, Kenzo Oshima, to travel to Afghanistan next week to assess the current humanitarian situation on the ground and to mobilize an effective international response.
The Secretary-General reiterates the appeal of the United Nations on 11 January 2001 to meet the urgent needs of the Afghan people, including shelter. He thanks all donors who have responded to this emergency appeal. He requests that the international community now come forward to meet the requirements set out in the Consolidated Inter-Agency Appeal for 2001 for Afghanistan, which requests $229 million, but has received less than $14 million in contributions thus far. The Secretary-General notes that an immediate and generous response to the Appeal will help forestall a major humanitarian crisis.
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