Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday confirmed that his country had launched an aid campaign to help four East African countries currently hit by an acute drought.
According to Erdogan, Turkey’s effort was aimed at helping Kenya, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen, all of who are ‘‘at risk of suffering a major humanitarian crisis.’‘
‘‘We cannot afford to turn a blind eye to requests for help from those countries where the drought-related hunger has reached critical levels,’‘ he said in a tweet.
Turkey launches an aid campaign to reach people in East Africa and Yemen who need our urgent assistance.
— Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (@RT_Erdogan) March 4, 2017
The President urged donors to send their contributions online via the website of the Turkish Red Crescent.
All the four African countries have each admitted that the impact of the drought is weighing down on their people. Kenya’s President weeks ago declared the drought a national disaster and called for aid to help avert a crisis.
It was followed by South Sudan where a blend of political crisis and insecurity has worsened the plight of nationals fleeing fighting in parts of the country. The government declared a famine last two weeks.
Somalia’s new President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed Farmajo, also recently declared the drought a ‘national disaster,’ after meeting with stakeholders. He called for international aid and asked citizens in the diaspora to also assist the government in mitigation efforts.
The Ethiopian government for its part has been distributing aid to areas hit by the drought. Addis Ababa has gone as far as send food aid to Somaliland weeks back.
Most United Nations agencies like (UNICEF, WHO, WFP etc.) and partners continue efforts to support governments in the Horn of Africa region with aid and other interventions to save the lives of children, their families and their livestock and contribute to a better future for all.