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EU earmarks P148-M aid for quake-hit Central Visayas

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MANILA -- The European Union on Thursday, Oct. 31 said up to €2.5 million (P148 million) in humanitarian assistance to was earmarked to help survivors of the 7.2-magnitude earthquake that rocked Central Visayas in mid-October, the 28-nation bloc's representative office in Manila said Thursday. 

 

Sourced from the EU Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Department (ECHO), the fund will be used to deliver emergency relief in the sectors of shelter, water and sanitation, primary health care and the management of evacuations sites, the EU noted in an e-mailed statement.

“We have seen the destruction and suffering caused by the powerful earthquake,” EU Ambassador to the Philippines Guy Ledoux was quoted as saying in the statement. 

“We stand by the people of the Philippines in this hour of need and this EU assistance reaffirms our commitment to immediately respond to the needs of the families affected by the disaster,” Ledoux added. 

On Oct. 15, a 7.2-magnitude earthquake struck the Central Visayas region – damaging infrastructure in Bohol province and surrounding islands. 

Bangkok-based ECHO regional health coordinator Torben Bruhn and EU humanitarian aid officer in the Philippines Arlynn Aquino assessed the priority needs during a two-day visit in Calape, Maribojoc and Loon towns in Bohol on Oct. 17 and 18, the statement noted.  

An estimated 3.1 million people were affected by the disaster, while over 200 were killed and nearly 800 were injured, according to government. 

Around 350,000 people have been displaced, of which 80 percent were relocated in makeshift shelters in evacuation centers. 

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