The Daily Manila Shimbun


EU provides P49 million to support civilians affected by Marawi violence

July 4, 2017

The European Union on Tuesday announced that it is providing P49 million or €850,000 worth of financial aid to help thousands of civilians displaced by the war in Marawi. The aid, said the EU’s mission in Manila, will benefit over 50,000 people and will be coursed through the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO). It will focus on the most crucial needs of evacuees, such as food, water supply, health care, hygiene kits, sanitation facilities and essential household items, as well as ensuring improved protection for those of concern. “The unprecedented violence in Marawi has caused tens of thousands of families to flee, leaving everything behind. This has triggered a sharp increase in humanitarian needs as many of the displaced people are currently deprived of fundamental means to sustain their day-to-day lives”, said Pedro-Luis Rojo, head of the East, South East Asia and Pacific Regional Office for the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO). Most of the more than 200,000 residents abandoned Marawi and fled to evacuation camps or lived with relatives in nearby municipalities after militants, mainly belonging to the Maute and Abu Sayyaf armed groups laid siege to the city last May 23 by occupying buildings and houses in several barangays east of Agus river, which cuts through the city. “This grant from the EU will support the delivery of immediate life-saving assistance to those most in need, and contribute to increased protection of populations affected by the conflict,” Rojo said. The aid comes as President Rodrigo Duterte said it will no longer accept aid from the European bloc, which has been critical towards his bloody crackdown on illegal drugs. More than 7,000 suspected drug users, including civilians were killed in the government’s anti-drug campaign since Duterte assumed the presidency in June 30 last year. DMS