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Sunday, October 23, 2016
Scottish cardinal heads Sudan briefing
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¬†At a special briefing today, Cardinal O'Brien will receive a first-hand account from SCIAF of the situation in Darfur. The UN has termed the growing crisis 'the worst humanitarian disaster' in the world today. He will also hear how generous Scots have donated over half a million pounds to SCIAF's Sudan appeal. In June, Cardinal O'Brien, as Chair of SCIAF's Board, warned that the tragedy unfolding in Darfur could only be halted by urgent action by the international community. Since then the situation has been exacerbated by lack of resources, continuing attacks and the onset of the rains. Over one million people have fled their homes forcing them to shelter in camps and 50,000 have already died. Funds from Scotland will help to save some of the hundreds of thousands of lives deemed to be at risk. It costs only £13 to build a temporary shelter and £42 for a household emergency kit. Earlier this week, two aircrafts carrying essential supplies reached Sudan. SCIAF's partners in the ACT/Caritas network will distribute the items to those who are most in need. The funds from Scotland are also helping to provide health centres, water and sanitation. The donation from SCIAF comes as Foreign Secretary Jack Straw visits a refugee camp in Northern Darfur. Stephen Martin, SCIAF's Africa Project Officer said: "The people of Scotland have responded tremendously to the plight of their brothers and sisters in Sudan, and aid agencies, like SCIAF, have been working in Darfur for months. "It is timely that as SCIAF's appeal for Sudan tops £500,000, the UK Government, through Mr Straw, are also playing their role to bring the terrible events in Sudan to an acceptable and peaceful conclusion. The crisis in Darfur has a political basis and as such needs a political solution." Readers in Scotland can make a donation to SCIAF's Sudan appeal by calling 0845 456 0018.
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