EU’s humanitarian aid ‘wasted’, says senior MEP

4 Sep 14
European Union red tape is stopping humanitarian aid from the economic bloc getting through in time, a senior member of the European Parliament has warned, meaning that money spent on such schemes is effectively wasted

By Andrew Pring | 5 September 2014

European Union red tape is stopping humanitarian aid from the economic bloc getting through in time, a senior member of the European Parliament has warned, meaning that money spent on such schemes is effectively wasted.

‘We need to make our budgetary procedure simpler and faster,’ the chair of the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee Elmar Brok said in a debate on the EU’s response to international crises. ‘Currently there is too much bureaucracy, and money given too late for humanitarian actions is wasted money.’

The committee has been debating the crises in Iraq, Gaza, Syria, Libya and Ukraine in meetings this week.

In his evidence to the committee, the head of the EU’s Iraq Delegation Jana Hybaskova said national reconciliation can be achieved only by the Iraqi people themselves. However, the EU can assist in this process, and EU member states must coordinate any plans to arm the Kurds in the nation's conflict against the Islamic militant group ISIS, Hybaskova added.

In Ukraine, humanitarian aid and eventual reconstruction costs could amount to ‘billions of euro’, warned Ertugul Apakan, Chief Monitor of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s special monitoring mission in Ukraine, and Peter Balas, the head of the European Commission’s Support Group for the country.

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