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Flash appeal: $415 million needed to help earthquake victims in Nepal

Posted 29 April, 11:02 am
29 April, 2015, The massive earthquake that struck Nepal on 25 April, causing a number of landslides and avalanches, has had devastating humanitarian consequences: more than 5,000 people have been killed and over 10,000 injured, with the numbers expected to rise as aid workers and search and rescue teams access remote areas closer to the epicentre of the earthquake.

Today, the UN and its humanitarian partners appealed to international donors to provide US$415 million to respond to the humanitarian needs of those affected by the earthquake over the next three months. Growing humanitarian needs include food, drinking water, shelter and medication.

“The timing of the interventions remains of the essence,” said the United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Nepal Jamie McGoldrick. “Although I am heartened and encouraged by the progress of the response to date, efforts need to be maintained and stepped up to ensure vital assistance reaches all the affected, especially those in the remote areas,” he said.

Strong aftershocks continue to threaten the lives of thousands of people, many of whom are sleeping outdoors – for fear of falling debris from aftershocks – in damp and cold conditions, making them vulnerable to respiratory infections. Rapidly deteriorating weather, as the monsoon season approaches, is likely to become an added logistical challenge to the provision of humanitarian assistance.

In response to the devastation, United Nations Emergency Coordinator Valerie Amos released US$15 million on Monday through the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) to enable humanitarian aid organizations to rapidly scale up operations and provide immediate assistance to people in need. Yet additional funding is needed to continue relief operations, especially as food insecurity is on the rise.

More than 8 million people – over a quarter of the Nepal’s population – have been affected by Saturday’s 7.8 magnitude earthquake, the largest to hit the country in more than 80 years, causing large-scale damage across Nepal including the densely-populated Kathmandu Valley. Some 70,000 houses were destroyed and another 530,000 homes damaged across the 39 of the Nepal’s 75 districts.

Source: UNOCHA