Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mahendra Bahadur Pande, had a meeting on Friday afternoon with a delegation consisting of Valerie Amos, United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Christos Stylianides, European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, and Ertharin Cousin, Executive Director of World Food Programme (WFP).
During the meeting, Minister appreciated the immediate response and support of the UN and EU in the aftermath of the massive earthquake that struck the country on 25 April. He also highlighted the priorities of the Government of Nepal in dealing with the present situation of humanitarian crisis and said that the devastation would also have serious negative impacts on our socio-economic development for a long time. He called for the further enhanced support from the international community not only in rescue operations and relief works but also in the rehabilitation and reconstruction phases.
In response, the delegation said that they were in Nepal to show solidarity and supportto the Government and people of Nepal and to assure them that they were not alone. Ms. Amos said that her office would support Nepal in its endeavour to come out of the presentsituation through both short- term and long-term measures. Mr. Christos said that European Union would also engage constructively in Nepal’s efforts in rescue and relief operations as well as in the reconstruction phase. Ms. Cousin underscored that WFP was ready to extend cooperation, through both traditional and non-traditional means, to the Government of Nepal in addressing the immediate and long term needs related to food security.
Also present in the meeting were Mr. Shanker D. Bairagi, Officiating Foreign Secretary and other officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Mr. Jamie MacGoldrick, UN Resident Representative in Nepal, H.E. Rensje Teerink, EU Ambassador to Nepal, and other officials from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), European Union (EU) and WFP were also present on the occasion.