New York [US], December 1 (ANI/Sputnik): UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock on Tuesday said that the 2021 humanitarian budget needs USD 35 billion to cover aid for 160 million people in need worldwide.
"We won't get a second chance to make the right choice. Today we are launching the Global Humanitarian Overview. For 2021, we will need USD 35 billion, to reach 160 million of the world's most vulnerable with life-saving support," Lowcock tweeted.
Notably, the UN 2021 Global Humanitarian Overview has projected a number of 235 million people worldwide to be in need of humanitarian assistance and protection next year.
Lowcock noted that the pandemic has knocked off several decades of humanitarian development, implying that the next year would be decisive in whether the progress would get back on track or not.
He specified that the COVID-19 virus was not the main danger for the poorest countries, but rather its containment measures, including lockdowns, which prompted economic recessions and related challenges, such as starvation, extreme poverty, and increased death tolls from other deadly diseases like malaria and tuberculosis.
In addition, Lowcock went on, the most vulnerable countries have been under higher risks of such global issues as climate change and military insecurity.
The UN official noted that humanitarian agencies and NGOs have significantly decreased the damage from pandemic over 2020, preventing "the worst outcomes, displaying impressive courage, commitment and compassion" through the efforts made in the vulnerable states.
Nevertheless, he said, it was necessary to allocate a USD 35 billion package to overcome the coronavirus-caused crisis, which is seen by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres as the worst since the Second World War, and bring the humanitarian action back on track. (ANI/Sputnik)