The Japanese Embassy in Manila made it known Thursday that Japan is responding to the call of the Philippines and the U.N. seeking assistance for the displaced residents in Mindanao, the second largest island of the archipelago. An uprising by Muslim rebels in Zamboanga City caused thousands of people to be displaced, while some have lost their lives.
The $2 million in aid from Japan was relayed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to Philippine President Benigno Aquino III on Wednesday when both leaders met during the ASEAN Summit in Brunei. The Japanese Embassy also said that the donation will be channeled through the International Organization for Migration, the U.N. Children’s Fund, and the World Food Programme for the purpose of supporting “relief operations in the sectors of food, water and sanitation.”
The United Nations said Monday that in order to support a six-month humanitarian assistance program, a total of $24 million of funds will be needed. The U.N. has already given an initial amount of $3 million funds for emergency response. The European Union has also granted 300,000 euros (approx. $405,000) to serve as funds for non-food supplies in case of emergency, including expenses for management of evacuation centres.
The faction group of MNLF was displeased with the peace negotiations with the Philippine Government and has decided to proclaim Zamboanga City independent from the Republic. More than 10,000 households were burned down by the rebel Muslims of the breakaway faction of Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), displacing more than 100,000 people in the city of Zamboanga. Even a part of Basilan, an island off the city, was also affected. Most of these displaced residents are now taking shelter in evacuation centres. More than 200 people – 208 rebels, 20 soldiers, 5 policemen, and 12 civilians – have lost their lives because of the standoff. Heavy rains frequenting the archipelago has only made the evacuees’ condition worse, thus requiring more support for the rehabilitation of the people and the city.
[via Global Post]
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