Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 18 September 2020

UAE to dispatch aid to Philippine volcano victims

The Emirates Red Crescent will begin by sending a team to Manila

The UAE is to deliver much-needed aid to people affected by the eruption of Taal volcano in the Philippines.

Officials said relief efforts would initially involve a team from the Emirates Red Crescent being dispatched to the capital, Manila.

Once on the ground, the ERC said it aimed to purchase “basic requirements from local markets” and supervise their delivery to those in need.

A second stage of the relief effort will involve flying in aid directly from the Emirates.

“The ERC’s plan is based on two components,” a statement from Wam, the UAE’s state news agency, said.

“The first consists of immediately sending an ERC delegation to the capital to lead its field relief operations.

“The second consists of dispatching air relief missions carrying the necessary supplies.”

The Taal volcano began spewing giant plumes of smoke and ash into the sky this month.

Experts warned a “hazardous eruption” was possible and authorities ordered the evacuation of 8,000 people living nearby.

The volcano, 60 kilometres south of Manila, is one of the world’s smallest, with an estimated 34 eruptions over the past 450 years.

Up to 450,000 residents in the surrounding area could be at risk if a large-scale eruption occurs.

On Tuesday, Dr Mohammed Ateeq Al Falahi, ERC secretary-general, said the UAE was ready to assist the Philippines in any way it could.

He said the ERC was co-ordinating closely with the UAE embassy in Manila and the Philippine Red Cross to deliver aid to the displaced promptly.

Updated: January 21, 2020 05:44 PM

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