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China donates $6mln to combat Ebola

Updated: 2014-10-20 16:15
By Pu Zhendong (chinadaily.com.cn)

China on Monday announced a new batch of $6-million donation to the United States World Food Program’s emergency operation to assist 1.3 billion people impacted by the Ebola virus outbreak in the three most affected countries – Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

The substantial amount of donation will be divided equally among the three states, enabling WFP to purchase vital food supplies – mainly rice, lentils or yellow peas, for emergency rations for more than 300,000 people for one month, as well as specialized nutrition products to help prevent malnutrition.

With this contribution, WFP has received one third of the 179 million needed for its regional emergency interventions against the unprecedented epidemic.

Denise Brown, WFP Regional Director for West Africa, said the organization and people of West Africa are especially thankful for China’s contribution at this difficult time of reversing Ebola’s advance.

"As the number of cases are growing fast, WFP is scaling up its operation and one of the biggest challenges is to ensure that we have sufficient funds to help people," Brown said.

Liu Junfeng, deputy director-general of the Department of Aid to Foreign Countries with the Ministry of Commerce, urged international community to provide food aid to relevant countries along with medical supplies.

"The eruption of the disease has affected every link on the food production chain from crop-growing to sales in many African countries. Food supplies to patients in quarantine and to the general public have met with serious trouble," he said.

Since Ebola outbreak was first identified in West Africa, there has been a surge in number of cases and areas hit by the disease. According to World Health Organization, 8,914 cases and 4,447 deaths have been reported in the three countries.

In addition to food supplies, WFP is also providing crucial logistics and infrastructure support for local health partners.

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