The Hon. Alexander Downer, MP
The Hon. Alexander Downer, MP

Media Release

FA088 - 7 August 2006

Australia Provides $1 Million Humanitarian Relief to Sri Lanka

Australia deplores the on-going violence in Sri Lanka and the apparent execution of fifteen local employees of a French charity found shot dead.

Australia calls on both sides to re-engage in the peace process without delay and work towards achieving a negotiated and durable solution to the conflict that will benefit all ethnic communities.

To help reduce the impact of the violence on the civilian population, the Australian Government will provide an initial $1,000,000 for immediate humanitarian relief supplies and services for victims of recent fighting around the north-east town of Muttur in Sri Lanka.

The funding will provide clean drinking water, mosquito nets, cooking utensils and sanitation for up to 6,000 people from various community groups who have fled their homes due to the fighting in Muttur.

Australia’s International Aid Agency, AusAID, will provide $500,000 through the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to assist those affected by the conflict with medical equipment and support services.

A further $300,000 will be channelled through Mercy Corps, an international non-government organisation operating in the north-east of Sri Lanka, and $200,000 through the International Organisation for Migration.

Thousands of people have been displaced by the fighting between the Liberation Tigers of Tamil (LTTE) and the Government of Sri Lanka forces.

Australia will continue to closely monitor the situation in Sri Lanka and stands ready to offer additional assistance if necessary.

Media Inquiries: Mr Downer's office 02 6277 7500 - Departmental Media Liaison 02 6261 1555

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