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The United Nations World Food Program (WFP) has today received confirmation of a contribution of €4 million (more than US$4.3 million) from the Federal Republic of Germany to help provide food needs of refugees sheltered in Ethiopia.  

The new funding will help WFP to provide monthly food rations and cash-based transfers for more than 600,000 refugees from Eritrea, South Sudan and Somalia for the rest of 2016 and for the next two years, a statement from the German Embassy says.

“For Germany, refugee issues have a high political priority. We are happy to provide this contribution in order to improve the living conditions of refugees in Ethiopia,” said the German Ambassador to Ethiopia, Joachim Schmidt. “This is part of Germany’s continued commitment to support Ethiopia in its position as the largest host of refugees on the African continent.”

Accordingly, WFP will begin using half of the German contribution this year towards immediate needs, and the rest will help meet refugees’ food needs in the future.

“This multi-year support from Germany is critical, as it allows WFP to plan ahead and know with certainty that a portion of the refugees will be catered for in the coming three years,” said John Aylieff, WFP Representative and Country Director.

Since 2015 alone, Germany has granted more than €30 million (close to US$33 million) to WFP’s relief and refugee operations in Ethiopia, placing it among its top five donors.

Ethiopia is currently home to more than 700,000 refugees, the highest number in any country in Africa.  Of these, WFP supports more than 600,000 with essential monthly food rations consisting of cereals, vegetable oil, pulses, sugar and salt, as well as with cash, which allows refugees to buy fresh foods and essential household items.

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