Global collaboration critical as humanitarian crises grow, says top UN relief official

3 February 2015

International stakeholders will increasingly need to collaborate as they face down rising levels of humanitarian strife around the globe, Valerie Amos, the United Nations humanitarian chief, said today.

Speaking at the opening of a regional consultation meeting in Budapest ahead of the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit, Ms. Amos, the UN UnderSecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs observed that 78 million people in 31 countries worldwide continue to depend on humanitarian support to survive.

“They are the most vulnerable people in the world and that number will grow as natural disasters strike during the year,” she confirmed.

Humanitarian needs have more than doubled in the past decade and have reached “unprecedented levels” as crises in Syria, Iraq, South Sudan and the Central African Republic have intensified, according to the Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), which Ms. Amos heads.

These challenges are currently being addressed by representatives of governments, humanitarian relief organizations, the private sector and community organizations during a two-day consultation in the Hungarian capital. The event is the fourth in a series of worldwide consultations bringing together participants from Europe, the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

The results and recommendations will form a broad foundation for next year’s World Humanitarian Summit, scheduled to be held in Istanbul, Turkey, during which delegates will seek to set a forward-looking humanitarian agenda that keeps pace with the growing humanitarian needs of an increasingly fragile planet.

“Together we need to find new solutions to the way we respond to humanitarian crises, safeguard our principles, expand our partnerships, and ensure a firm policy and evidence base for our work,” Ms. Amos continued. “No one organization can do this alone.”

 

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