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WFP offers aid to vulnerable people displaced in west Libya

Xinhua, May 22, 2015 Adjust font size:

The World Food Programme ( WFP) is currently providing assistance for 51,000 of the most vulnerable Libyans who have been displaced in the west of the North African country, the deputy UN spokesman, Farhan Haq, told reporters here Thursday.

Through its partner, Shaikh Tahir Azzawi Charity Organization ( STACO), WFP is supporting affected families in towns including Wadi ash-Shati, Misrata, Sebha and Traghen, Haq said at a daily news briefing here.

"The organization plans to help nearly quarter of a million internally displaced people in Libya with life-saving food assistance over the next six months," he said. "So far, 10 trucks have crossed the Tunisian border carrying food to STACO's warehouse in western Libya for distribution."

"It is currently working with another Libyan charity to distribute food to those who have fled eastern Libya, especially Benghazi," he said.

The UN agency aims to provide life-saving assistance to a total of 243,000 internally displaced people in the country over the next six months and has established a partnership with another Libyan charity to start food distributions in the coming days to families who have left their homes the country's east, especially Benghazi, which is the second largest city, and which has been hit hard by violence.

Since the beginning of this year WFP has reached 75,000 people throughout Libya with food assistance, but distributions were suspended in March and April due to lack of funding.

Despite the needs, WFP's emergency operation in Libya is only 33 percent funded so far, he said, adding that it needs to raise an additional 14 million U.S. dollars to ensure that its operation inside Libya continues uninterrupted.

Libya has been suffering from growing instability as heavy clashes further polarize the North African country. Since the ouster of long-ruling strongman Moammar Qadhafi in 2011, the Libyan government has long been at the mercy of rogue brigades as the central government has not had enough power to regain control over its territory. Endite