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Canada Continues Support of International Efforts in Mali

ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA -- (Marketwire) -- 01/29/13 -- The Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of International Cooperation, announced today that Canada will continue to provide support to help the people of Mali affected by conflict and instability. Canada is increasing its investment in Mali to help improve food security, reduce malnutrition, address emergency healthcare needs and provide other much-needed humanitarian assistance. The announcement was made during a high-level international meeting at the African Union Secretariat in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

"Canada has been a friend of the Malian people," said Minister Fantino. "Building on Canada's significant investments over the past year, Canada will continue its life-saving work in Mali through humanitarian and development assistance."

Canada, through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), will help respond to the immediate humanitarian needs of persons affected by the crisis in Mali. This support will be disbursed to Canadian non-governmental partners, as well as to United Nations agencies, to provide emergency health care, maternal, newborn and nutrition services for children under five. Part of this funding will also deliver shelter, primary health care, water and sanitation to some 150,000 Malian refugees in Niger, Mauritania and Burkina Faso, and more than 235,000 internally-displaced people in Mali.

"Canadian investments have contributed to improving the quality of life of the most vulnerable Malians affected by the crisis, but we remain deeply concerned about the deteriorating situation and its effects on the stability of the Sahel region," concluded Minister Fantino. "The crisis can only be resolved through a collaborative approach between the various Malian, African, and international stakeholders, as well as through the return of a democratic government in Mali."

Backgrounder

Situation in Mali

The humanitarian situation in Mali continues to be of concern. Humanitarian agencies report that the food and nutrition crisis has left 2 million Malians food-insecure, and that an estimated 383,000 have been displaced by the conflict, including more than 235,000 within Mali and some 150,000 who have sought refuge in Burkina Faso, Niger and Mauritania.

Canadian Funding for Mali

Canada is increasing its investment in Mali by $13 million to help improve food security, reduce malnutrition, address emergency healthcare and provide much-needed humanitarian assistance.

Humanitarian Assistance in Mali

- The United Nations World Food Programme (http://www.acdi-cida.gc.ca/acdi-cida/ACDI-CIDA.nsf/eng/NAD-1131453-QDQ ) will provide emergency food and nutrition assistance to 401,000 vulnerable people affected by the crisis who are living in the north and to 135,000 vulnerable people in the south, including displaced households, host families and 15,000 people severely affected by the 2012 drought who need assistance to recover from the impact of the food and nutrition crisis, as well as blanket and supplementary feeding provided to 141,900 children under five years of age, and pregnant and lactating women in Mali. ($3 million)

- The United Nations World Food Programme - Humanitarian Air Service (http://www.wfp.org/content/united-nations-humanitarian-air-service-unhas) will provide safe, efficient and cost-effective travel service for United Nations agencies, non-governmental organizations and donor organizations providing humanitarian assistance in Mali, as well as light cargo such as medical supplies, high-energy foods, and information and communications technology equipment. ($500,000)

- Handicap International (http://en.handicap-international.ca/index.php) will provide emergency maternal and newborn healthcare for 30,000 conflict-affected women, and emergency medical supplies and equipment to16 health districts. ($1 million)

- Medecins du Monde (http://medecinsdumonde.ca/) will provide emergency healthcare to as many as 203,000 people in Gao and Kidal, two regions affected by conflict, and treatment of acute malnutrition for 28,000 children and 7,400 pregnant and lactating women. ($1.5 million)

- World Vision Canada (http://www.worldvision.ca/Pages/welcome.aspx) will help improve hygiene and sanitation practices in schools as a result of hygiene promotion campaigns, and improve access to clean water and sanitation in targeted health centres. ($1 million)

Humanitarian Assistance to Malians in neighbouring countries

- The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (http://www.acdi-cida.gc.ca/acdi-cida/ACDI-CIDA.nsf/eng/NAD-321135143-NXV) will continue to provide protection and assistance to more than 150,000 Malian refugees in neighbouring Mauritania, Niger and Burkina Faso, and prepare for the possibility of up to 400,000 additional refugees in neighbouring countries and up to 300,000 additional internally displaced people inside Mali, should the security situation continue to deteriorate. ($1.5 million)

- The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) (http://www.acdi-cida.gc.ca/acdi-cida/ACDI-CIDA.nsf/eng/NAD-1131453-QDQ) will provide emergency food and nutrition assistance to more than 150,000 Malian refugees currently in camps in Niger, Mauritania and Burkina Faso. This includes the provision of blanket and supplementary feeding for 27,000 children aged 6 to 59 months, and the treatment of moderate acute malnutrition for 3,250 children and close to 800 pregnant and lactating women. ($1.5 million)

- The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) (http://www.icrc.org/eng/) will provide food rations for 120,000 displaced people for up to three months, in addition to water to 32,500 conflict-affected people in northern Mali. They will also support nine health centres serving 23,000 people in Gao, northern Mali. ($2 million)

- CARE Canada (http://care.ca/) will ensure that the basic water, sanitation and hygiene needs of 50,000 vulnerable off-camp Malian refugees and host families in Niger are met through the provision of non-food items, hygiene promotion, clean drinking water and safe sanitation. The project will result in improved health and decreased risk of water-borne diseases for 50,000 people in a region affected by food insecurity and displacement, and improved resilience and food security for 2,000 vulnerable families. ($1 million)

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