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Muslim Aid Statement at the UN Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in Geneva

Addressing the Third Session of the UN Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in Geneva on 12 May 2011, the CEO of Muslim Aid, Syed Sharfuddin, called on governments to adopt innovative strategies for disaster risk reduction. In his address to the Plenary, he said: "Governments should rethink how we can broaden the mandate of certain global measures to achieve better results. For example, the mandate of the international community under Responsibility to Protect should include measures for helping governments that are unable to prepare their people for natural or man-made disasters."

Muslim Aid made a number of recommendations for enhancing investment in local action. These included the suggestion for disaster-prone countries to spend at least 0.5% of their GDP on disaster preparedness for improving the capacity of their people to be better prepared for disasters.

Muslim Aid also called for the establishment of a global facility for technical cooperation in disaster management under the Global Platform for capacity building in countries that lack an appropriate response mechanism.

Recounting the contribution of Muslim Aid in disaster mitigation and emergency response, Sharfuddin said: “Muslim Aid’s Flood Mitigation Project in Banda Aceh, Indonesia, funded by Multi Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) and managed by the World Bank after the 2004 Tsunami is an example of donors, NGOs and the host government working together to benefit people affected by disasters.”

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Note to Editors

• The UN Conference was opened on 10 May 2011 by the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and was addressed by Government Ministers, mayors of world's large cities, parliamentarians, international NGOs, business and private sector leaders and media representatives. Plenary sessions, working groups and parallel events are scheduled throughout the week.

• Muslim Aid is a UK based relief and development agency established in 1985 and has worked in over 70 countries with field offices in Bangladesh, Bosnia, Cambodia, Gambia, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Pakistan, Somalia, Sri Lanka and Sudan.  Muslim Aid works with all in need, regardless of their race, religion, gender, nationality or political opinion. Muslim Aid programmes include emergency relief; capacity building through water, sanitation and health programmes; education and skills training; micro-financing and income generation and orphan care. As well as giving practical assistance, Muslim Aid tackles poverty by developing sustainable solutions, advocating for a more just and sustainable future.

• For further information about the work of Muslim Aid and its overseas Field Offices, please visit Muslim Aid website at www.muslimaid.org or contact Inlia Aziz on +44 0207 377 4200 or  

inlia@muslimaid.org

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