Mali Donor Conference, Brussels - 15 May
A donor conference on Mali is being hosted by the EU and the French Government in Brussels to discuss how to help rebuild the country after months of conflict and regional instability. It will focus on resuming development aid (following the freeze imposed as a result of the coup in March last year), supporting the plan for Mali 2013-14, and securing funds for that purpose.
Justine Greening, International Development Secretary, and Stephen O’Brien, the UK’s Special Representative for the Sahel, will represent the UK. The French President and Mali’s Interim President will also be attending, along with other regional leaders.
Laura Taylor, Tearfund’s Head of Public Policy, said:
'This conference must make sure aid is resumed to reach the people of Mali who critically need it. Funding long-term development has a crucial part to play in building better resilience for vulnerable communities in Mali and the surrounding region. It’s essential for development, peace and security both in Mali and across the Sahel.
'Work is needed to return people to their homes and rebuild communities. There are now around 174,000 Malian refugees in neighbouring countries, with more than 300,000 people displaced internally (IDPs). Many families have fled intense conflict in the last six months.
'Children are hit hardest in this conflict. 700,000 urgently need to get back into education.
'Tearfund has helped thousands of people who, after many months, continue to rely on host families for accommodation, putting immense strain on the already limited resources of Bamako and other southern cities. We call on Justine Greening and Stephen O’Brien to ask the conference to resume aid urgently and without delay, for the sake of the people of Mali.'