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UN emergency fund gains $469 million in pledges

Published on Dec 12, 2012 5:54 AM
This file picture taken on Oct 11, 2012, shows a Muslim Rohingya woman breastfeeding her baby at a school sheltering Internally Displaced Persons in the village of Theik Kayk Pyim, located on the outskirts of Sittwe, capital of Myanmar's western Rakhine state. Myanmar is among the recipients of humanitarian aid from the United Nations (UN) in 2012. UN member states have pledged US$384 million (S$469 million) to the world body's Central Emergency Respond Fund to quickly address natural disasters and other crises in 2013. -- PHOTO: AFP

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - United Nations (UN) member states pledged US$384 million (S$469 million) on Tuesday to an emergency fund that will allow the world body to respond quickly to natural disasters and other crises in 2013, UN aid chief Valerie Amos said.

The UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), which was created so cash could be given out quickly after a disaster without aid agencies having to wait for donations to roll in, has raised more than US$2.8 billion since it was launched in 2006.

"CERF is not just an acronym for a multi-million dollar fund," said UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon. "When floods wash away homes and hope, when wars tear apart schools and hospitals, when drought destroys crops and prospects, CERF reminds the victims they are not alone."

So far in 2012 the fund has allocated US$465 million for humanitarian aid in 49 countries, including Myanmar, South Sudan, Syria, North Korea, Haiti and Pakistan.

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