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Worlds poorest need relief help combined with development plans – UN official

In a keynote address to the opening of the International Diploma in Humanitarian Assistance Programme organized by Fordham University of New York, Anwarul Karim Chowdhury yesterday noted that the humanitarian crises in the least developed countries (LDCs) seriously hampered their long-term development efforts.Mr. Chowdhury, UN High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States, emphasized that efforts to reach and provide assistance to the most vulnerable persons affected by crises could only be sustained if there was a clear strategy for moving as quickly as possible away from the simple provision of emergency relief and towards a more comprehensive humanitarian and development assistance programme. He also stressed that there could be no transition to development without the involvement and participation of the community and local structures and institutions.The participants in Fordham’s four-week workshop – co-sponsored by the Centre for International Health and Cooperation, the University of Geneva and the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland – many of whom work for humanitarian agencies around the world, will undergo training in crisis negotiation, international human rights law and health and human service issues. A number of UN agencies will be represented by field-level participants.The Programme also opened with a videotaped welcome message from UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who underscored the importance of well-coordinated humanitarian assistance programmes in various parts of the world because of the increasing complexity and frequency of such emergencies. read more

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