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The United Nations is increasing its appeal for funds for Liberia
from $69-million to $100-million to meet increased relief needs for
the strife-torn west African state, the UN Office for the
Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said yesterday.
Rebels and the government reached a peace deal last month after the
departure into exile of former Liberian president Charles Taylor,
bringing an end to 14 years of nearly continuous war.
Immediately following that peace deal, UN relief efforts
concentrated on the capital Monrovia but have now reached out to
other areas of the country as these became more accessible, said
spokesperson Elisabeth Byrs.
The initial $69-million dollar appeal covered requirements to the
end of this year, and only half this sum had been raised, she
The UN refugee agency UNHCR meanwhile said it was preparing the
possible return home by road of several thousand refugees from
Sierra Leone still in Liberia.
A UNHCR team had examined the state of the road and found it in
good condition from the capital Monrovia as far as the border with
Sierra Leone, but requiring major repair work between the border
and Zimmi in Sierra Leone, said a UNHCR spokesperson.
However arrangements were being made in Sierra Leone to receive the
returning refugees especially at Zimmi where a well equipped
reception centre with experienced staff awaited.
Some 14 000 Sierra Leone refugees are in Liberia awaiting
repatriation, including some who fled fighting in their country as
far back as the start of the war there in 1991. – Sapa-AFP.