UNHCR responds to China's urgent need for tents for earthquake victims

Wednesday, 21 May 2008

GENEVA - The UN refugee agency is providing 11,000 urgently needed tents to China to help provide emergency shelter for some of the 5 million people left homeless after last week's devastating earthquake in Sichuan province.

"We have tents in China and they are immediately available to help those who desperately need a roof over their heads," said High Commissioner António Guterres on Wednesday. "This urgently needed aid is an expression of our solidarity with those suffering as a result of this terrible disaster."

The tents, which are manufactured in China for UNHCR, will be transported to the quake zone as soon as possible. They will be able to provide shelter for 55,000 people. The final details of delivery and destination are currently being worked out with the Chinese authorities.

UNHCR's donation was in response to a request on Tuesday from the Chinese government to help their relief effort by providing tents.

UNHCR will be appealing to donors to cover the costs of the tents.