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Estonia Provides Humanitarian Aid to Philippines and Sends Estonian Disaster Relief Team Members

11.11.2013

Today the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is sending two members of the Estonian Disaster Relief Team, as well as equipment and technology for the creation of a base-camp for humanitarian workers, to assist those who have suffered from the devastating typhoon in the Philippines. The Estonian Disaster Relief Team experts will help to build a humanitarian aid camp. Estonia is also allocating 150,000 Euros to the Philippines for humanitarian aid.

According to Foreign Minister Urmas Paet, the Philippines has been hit with one of this century’s worst typhoons and has suffered a very-large scale catastrophe. “Right now the international community must focus on providing aid and covering the basic needs of people who are affected by the catastrophe. Thousands of people’s homes have been destroyed, roads are unusable, and people are lacking enough food, water, and shelter,” said Foreign Minister Paet. “The needs of those affected will become clearer in the next few days and we are ready to continue providing assistance,” he said.

The Estonian Disaster Relief Team members will travel to the Philippines as part of the International Humanitarian Partnership (IHP) network alongside rescue workers from Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark, and Luxembourg.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has decided to assist the children in the area of the catastrophe through UNICEF with 100,000 Euros and through the Red Cross with 50,000 Euros.

Last Friday morning the island of Samar and then the island of Leyte, which has several million residents, in the Philippines were hit with one of the strongest typhoons ever recorded. The authorities estimated that the typhoon affected the lives of over 4.3 million people in 36 provinces. The capital of Leyte, Tacloban, and the coastal city of Palo, which is 10 kilometres away from Tacloban, suffered the most from the catastrophe. The current estimate of typhoon victims will unfortunately greatly increase and the typhoon-ravaged country needs emergency assistance immediately.

Estonia has been an IHP member since 2006. The IHP is a non-binding, informal organisation whose main objective is to jointly provide humanitarian assistance, primarily through supporting the missions of the UN and its sub-organisations. Besides Estonia, IHP members include Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, United Kingdom, and Germany.   

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