The US Embassy in Manila has pledged another $6.6 million in assistance for war-ravaged Marawi City on top of $14 million already pledged.
Speaking during a television interview today (Tuesday, January 9), Ambassador Sung Kim said: “We’ll continue to do a lot of work here and I should mention that in the Marawi context, as you know, we recently announced that we have allocated $14 million to help with the Marawi situation.
“This new funding will support some of the most vulnerable populations affected by the conflict. The United States is deeply committed to supporting our friend and ally in long-term recovery efforts to ensure a brighter and more peaceful future for the people of Mindanao.”
USAID’s earlier assistance focused on restoring water supplies and distributing equipment for schools serving the displaced population.
A statement from the US Embassy said the latest aid would continue to help restore public services, such as water and electricity, and would work with communities to jumpstart livelihoods, promote community dialogue, and improve health and education systems.
“To help fortify the area’s longer-term stabilisation and rehabilitation, USAID will offer skills training and psychosocial counselling for youth, and promote community alternatives to violent extremism,” it said.
Among the projects funded by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) in Marawi and surrounding areas are:
Relief supplies to improve conditions in evacuation centers and transitional housing
Supplies and services to combat tuberculosis and support maternal, newborn, and child health needs in health clinics
Restoration of water and electricity
Jumpstart livelihood and economic activity
Promotion of community dialogue
Improvement of health and education systems
Psychosocial counseling for youth, and promotion of community alternatives to violent extremism
After the USA, the next biggest source of foreign assistance for Marawi is Australia. Aid has also been given by Japan, Thailand, China and the European Union.
Meanwhile, Army chief Lieutenant General Rolando Joselito Bautista told reporters today that efforts by jihadists to radicalise new members would be bolstered without a successful rehabilitation of the city.