New York (UNA-OIC) – UN Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Mark Lowcock, on Friday released $6 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) to help the response to the Beirut port blast, bringing the total UN funding for this crisis to $15 million.
The CERF allocation will fund trauma care and other urgent support to hospitals, the repair of damaged homes for the most vulnerable people affected by the explosion, and logistical support.
It comes on top of $9 million in funding which was released from the Lebanon Humanitarian Fund by the UN’s Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator for Lebanon, Ms. Najat Rochdi, within 36 hours of the blast. This funding will address primary health needs and provide food assistance, water, sanitation and hygiene support and protection to those most vulnerable.
Tuesday’s explosion ripped through Beirut’s port, leaving more than 150 people dead, 5,000 injured, many more missing and thousands homeless. Three hospitals were left inoperable and two more sustained substantial damage. Those that remain have been overwhelmed with casualties.
In addition to the funding released, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has coordinated the deployment of experts from the International Search and Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG) and the UN Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC) system to help first responders in Beirut.
The United Nations and its partners are urgently working to continue to assess the situation and mobilize emergency assistance.
More supplies are arriving each day to support operations. Three cargo flights with food supplies from the World Food Program (WFP) are due to arrive in Beirut in the coming days, according to a statement published by OCHA on Friday.