Darfur

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:31 pm on 9th June 2004.

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Photo of Hilary Benn Hilary Benn The Secretary of State for International Development 12:31 pm, 9th June 2004

I am grateful to my right hon. Friend. As he knows, the two largest bilateral donors in response to the crisis in Darfur are first, the United States of America and secondly, the United Kingdom. That point bears some reflection. On the action that I now propose to take, I discussed the situation in Darfur with my EU Development Minister colleagues when we met in Dublin on 1 June, and I promised them that I would report back to them following my visit. I shall do so as quickly as possible, to make the point that the needs there are enormous and that we must all do more in response to the humanitarian crisis.

My right hon. Friend will also be aware of the meeting in Geneva last week. The UN appealed overall for $288 million for its 90-day plan. The UN in Khartoum told me that it estimates that it is still short of between $80 million and $100 million, although since then the UK has announced a further pledge of £15 million—about $27 million—which will make a contribution. However, I take on board my right hon. Friend's point about the need for others to contribute to solving the problem.