Somalia: International Assistance

International Development written question – answered on 18 December 2007.

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Photo of Keith Simpson Keith Simpson Shadow Minister (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development pursuant to the answer on 22 November 2007, Official Report, column 1042W, on Somalia: international assistance, whether the Government will provide (a) financial and (b) logistical support for the French initiative to protect humanitarian supply ships sailing to Somalia from incidents of piracy.

Photo of Gareth Thomas Gareth Thomas Parliamentary Under-Secretary(Department for International Development) (Trade Policy) (also Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform), Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform) (Trade and Consumer Affairs) (also Department for International Development), Party Chair, Co-operative Party

We commend the French initiative to provide protection to ships delivering aid to Somalia for the World Food Programme. The UK is not currently providing any financial or logistical support to France for this initiative. We will continue to monitor progress with the initiative and consider any future assistance as necessary. The UK continues to attach great importance to the need to ease the critical humanitarian situation in Somalia. We have contributed £8.6 million in additional funds since January this year to help those worst affected by the conflict and malnutrition.

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