More needs to be done to support Nepal, says UN chief

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A UNICEF worker speaks to a child seeking temporary shelter at a vacant field next to Nepal’s army headquarters in Kathmandu following Nepal’s massive earthquake. Photo: UNICEF/NYHQ2015-1007/Nybo

Humanitarian aid is making a difference in Nepal, but the international community needs to do more, according to the UN Secretary-General.

Ban Ki-moon on Friday addressed the UN General Assembly on the situation in the country, where he said the lives of 8 million Nepalese have been changed beyond recognition.

Two earthquakes killed more than 8000 people in the South Asian country, and hundreds of thousands are in need of emergency relief.

Stephanie Coutrix reports.

The UN chief described Nepal as being been torn apart, with years of development gains wiped out.

Around 400,000 homes are estimated to have been destroyed and another 280,000 damaged.

Ban Ki-moon said this is the first major natural disaster to strike since an international agreement on disaster risk reduction was reached in Sendai in March.

A key component of that agreement was a commitment to undertake a resilient recovery approach in the event of a disaster. We must now support Nepal in translating this new global framework into action. The Flash Appeal launched on 28 April, calls for $423 million to support the people of Nepal through the immediate life-saving response phase. The appeal is currently only 14 per cent funded.

The Secretary-General added that experience has shown that the post disaster period is an opportunity to reassess vulnerabilities and to build back better.

He said efforts in Nepal must be ambitious, long-term and risk-informed if they are to protect against future losses.

Stephanie Coutrix, United Nations.

Duration: 1’17″

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