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Aid to Palestine for deficit vs. Aid to DR Congo for internally displaced and refugees - Adventures of a Retired Armchair Traveler
sometimes i visit these: Congogirl on Twitter / Bloglines Congogirl link / Congogirl's Links List on My Del.icio.us / Where IS DR Congo, anyway?? / Congo Daily / good summary article on DR Congo / Samantha Power's article, "Bystanders to Genocide" / Dizolele - Eye on Africa / Congo Blog - Ba Leki / Cedric Kalonji's photo blog / Extra Extra / Nayembi / Thirteen Wildlife Blogs from DR Congo / Babycatcher / Global Voices / Helene in RD Congo / ID Land - adventures in international development / John's Blog / Kim Gjerstad in Congo / On Safari with el Jorgito / The Salon of News and Thought / This is Zimbabwe / Bluehaired Mary / African Path / Global Bioethics Blog / Somewhere in Africa / Africa is a Country February 2014
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Wed, Mar. 1st, 2006 11:13 am
Aid to Palestine for deficit vs. Aid to DR Congo for internally displaced and refugees

I know, I know, you will probably all think that I am comparing apples to oranges, which I do not deny. But I can't help but note the discrepancy between the European Union offering $144 million to prevent the potential 'financial collapse of the Palestinian Authority within two weeks' (link requires login) and the $16 million that UN agencies 'drummed up' for the 'more than 80,000 [displaced] people in the eastern Katanga and North Kivu provinces, with most of those displaced living in dire conditions at camps without adequate food or health supplies' and for those returning from among the 420,000 Congolese currently living in nine neighboring countries.

And, to compare apples to apples, from the first link comes this information: "Of the $144 million the Europeans pledged on Monday, about $47.4 million will pay energy bills that the Palestinians owe Israeli companies, $75.9 million will be channeled through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees and $20.7 million is cash — direct budget support to help pay salaries."

So, $75.9 million goes for Palestinian refugees. But $16 million goes for Congolese displaced/refugees.

To put this in perspective, I checked out the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), which claims that there were an estimated 4,283,892 Palestinian refugees as of June 2005.

According to the DR Congo article above, there are an estimated 420,000 refugees and 1.6 million internally displaced persons (IDPs), so roughly 2.1 million people who need assistance, or half of the number of Palestinian refugees.

So, my logic, I know, comparing apples to oranges, says that there should be at least $38 million made available to help the DR Congo refugees and IDPs, of which only $24 million was requested and $16 million secured.

Also, I can only imagine what feats might be accomplished if government salaries were subsidized in DR Congo.

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congogirl
congogirl
congogirl
Wed, Mar. 1st, 2006 10:49 am (UTC)

In the US, slaves used to be counted as 3/5 of a man. Oh, and in terms of civil rights, women weren't counted at all. This attitude seems to be difficult to shake, particularly when it has taken so long to 'discover' that empowerment of women is one of the few development tactics that works. I bet empowerment of women would even reduce conflict.

As for the Marshall Plan for Africa, no clue.


ReplyThread Parent
girl_on_a_stick
girl_on_a_stick
stickgirl
Wed, Mar. 1st, 2006 05:20 pm (UTC)

I'm not sure that throwing money at either of them is the answer, sadly. At least not without a far better plan than what's being created for Palestine.


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congogirl
congogirl
congogirl
Wed, Mar. 1st, 2006 06:10 pm (UTC)

Oh, I gave up on "answer" a long time ago. A good plan, though -- yes, they should come up with one. For DR Congo as well -- there are camps that are becoming long-term there, though of course not like Palestine, the country that doesn't exist...


ReplyThread Parent
purplemoonstar
purplemoonstar
Hillary
Thu, Mar. 2nd, 2006 12:07 am (UTC)

I have the same exact feelings u do. I get so pissed when africa is negelcted and a country with like half the problems get more money. And don't get me started on the "middle east" crisis.


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congogirl
congogirl
congogirl
Thu, Mar. 2nd, 2006 06:08 am (UTC)

I know, I know -- half the population of Palestine is a refugee because the country doesn't exist. I don't even understand how the first half are NOT refugees...


ReplyThread Parent
purplemoonstar
purplemoonstar
Hillary
Fri, Mar. 3rd, 2006 07:55 am (UTC)

me neither. I used to get into heated debates in class at Gally because i felt that the Middle east was taking up way to much of the world's aid resources and other people were like well the problems in the middle east are so much greater. I was like greater HOW? hello have you heard of the great lakes region and congo etc..inorant people blah


ReplyThread Parent
themalau
themalau
Thu, Mar. 2nd, 2006 01:23 am (UTC)

Well... I hate it when I am only left with the option of preaching to the crowd ;)
I agree with you tenfold, even though I am also a big supporter of the Palestinians' rights.


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congogirl
congogirl
congogirl
Thu, Mar. 2nd, 2006 06:10 am (UTC)

I am as well a supporter of Palestinian rights. This was more intended to bring to light the priorities of the EU, since they are helping fund above mentioned UN efforts.


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Thu, Mar. 2nd, 2006 01:27 am (UTC)

Oh, and can you please x-post this to The Salon, along with the other one on EU troops. I am working on something on the Lutundula report, and the unbelievably twisted electoral law, which feels like the people are not really electing their leaders... So many zany things!


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