2nd wave of  COVID-19

To protect vulnerable and needy people need of hour: EU envoy

ISLAMABAD: EU Ambassador to Pakistan Androulla Kaminara on Sunday said that the European Union was trying to help the most vulnerable segments of the society by ensuring basic amenities of lives at their doorsteps, including health, clean drinking water, sanitation and hygiene environment amid surging second wave of COVID-19. 

Talking to APP, she said in that regard the EU signed a memorandum of understanding with UNHCR and committed to provide Euro10 million to boost the latter's assistance operations for Afghan refugees and their host communities in Pakistan.

The funding was aimed to focus on mitigating the short and medium-term impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, besides expanding UNHCR's health efforts for refugee and host communities, she added.

Another important component of the new project, Androulla Kaminara  said, would be implementing activities for empowering vulnerable Afghan refugees and host communities by ensuring livelihood opportunities.

The three-year project would be implemented across the country and was expected to benefit some 370,000 Afghan refugees and Pakistani host communities, she added.

Meanwhile, UNHCR’s Representative in Pakistan Noriko Yoshida welcomed the EU’s contribution, saying  such support amid the current COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated the EU’s commitment to “leaving no one  behind”.

“This support is truly significant. At a time when it is most urgently needed, the EU will help make a difference in the lives of so many refugees and Pakistani host communities impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said. - APP