Rome – Nov. 12, 2013 – Italy has pledged one million euro in aid to the Philippines for the typhoon Haiyan emergency, which has left at least 10,000 dead. The announcement came from Deputy Minister with the remit for international cooperation Lapo Pistelli, who explained that “in the coming hours one million euro in emergency supplies for transport, food, medicines and equipment needs will be sent out to the agencies dealing with the emergency”.
Minister Emma Bonino specified that this sum was for the immediate present, adding that “it would be great if what took place after the southeast Asian tsunami were to happen again: that 50 million euro donated by the Italian people through telephone text messages were well spent, go to Sri Lanka and see for yourselves”.
Humanitarian aid leaving from Dubai
The Italian Cooperation is participating in a humanitarian flight leaving out of Dubai with goods (tents, blankets, water bottles and purifiers) for a value of approximately €350,000, has expressed willingness to make an additional contribution of €300,000 in support of the WFP emergency food assistance plan that the Philippine government has accepted, and, finally, will make additional €350,000 contribution to the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Federation.
MFA tracing Italian nationals in the Philippines
The foreign ministry is tracing all Italian nationals present in the Philippines. “Some of these were not registered on our website, nor had they signaled their presence earlier; we have therefore been alerted by their families and have begun to search in the midst of this disaster”, explained the minister, who urged all Italians going abroad to register on the website dovesiamonelmondo.it.
Approximately a dozen Italians are unaccounted for, according to Italian Ambassador to Manila Massimo Roscigno, who added that “we are hoping that this is only a problem of communications”; “in many cases”, the ambassador continued, “we have been able to make contact with people or make sure they are alright. In some cases we have tried to contact with persons that we were informed were there, or who were registered as residents in some areas, but have not been able to get through since communications have been completely interrupted”. (Ministry of Foreign Affairs)