WFP / BEIRUT SHIP AID FOOD

24-Aug-2020 00:03:31
World Food Programme (WFP) has brought into Lebanon 12,500 metric tons of wheat flour in order to stabilize the price of bread across the country throughout September. WFP
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STORY: WFP / BEIRUT SHIP AID FOOD
TRT: 3:31
SOURCE: WFP
RESTRICTIONS: PLEASE CREDIT WFP ON SCREEN
LANGUAGE: ARABIC / ENGLISH /NATS

DATELINE: 22 AUGUST 2020, BEIRUT, LEBANON /RECENT
SHOTLIST
22 AUGUST 2020, BEIRUT, LEBANON

1. Wide shot, ship in port
2. Various shots, offloading cargo from ship and loading onto trucks
3. Various shots, WFP staff building a warehouse
4. Wide shot, crane unloading sacks
5. Wide shot, destroyed port building
6. Wide shot, WFP flag above sea containers with Beirut skyline in back
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Amer Daoudi, Director of Operations, WFP:
“All storage facilities have been destroyed. The grain silos have been destroyed. It is the only facility in the whole of Lebanon for the reception of bulk cargo, whether it is for bread-making or animal feed. That facility has been completely wiped out. All equipment to discharge bulk has been completely wiped out. What WFP did within days, diverted a vessel of 12,500 tons to support the Lebanese people, as well as mobilizing storage capacity, which is where I am standing you can see it behind being set up, and we are in the process of bringing equipment to augment and restore the capacity of Beirut port to handle bulk cargo.”

13 AUGUST 2020, KARANTINA NEIGHBOURHOOD, BEIRUT, LEBANON

8. Tilt up, building with all windows blown off
9. Wide shot, damaged house
10. Med shot, man clearing debris
11. Various shots, local NGO providing first aid
12. Tracking shot, Hussein showing his damaged house
13. SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Omar Hussein Day Labourer:
“Even before the explosion, the situation was extremely dire. My wife and I need medicine that costs up to 850,000 LBP and we have no one to support us but God.
My children used to support us with 50-60-70 thousand LBP, but after the protests and spread of COVID-19, they no longer had jobs. This led us to stay without medication for almost 2 months.”
14. Various shots, WFP distributes food to some 200 families
STORYLINE
World Food Programme (WFP) has brought into Lebanon 12,500 metric tons of wheat flour in order to stabilize the price of bread across the country throughout September.

The agreement and distribution plan with the Ministry of Economy and Trade, millers, and bakeries is being finalized using existing mechanisms to avoid market disruptions.

Lebanon imports nearly 85 percent of its food, with the bulk of trade passing through the Port of Beirut. The severe damage to the port could put further upward pressure on staple food prices, that have skyrocketed over the past year

“All storage facilities have been destroyed. The grain silos have been destroyed. It is the only facility in the whole of Lebanon for the reception of bulk cargo, whether it is for bread-making or animal feed. That facility has been completely wiped out. All equipment to discharge bulk has been completely wiped out,” WFP’s Director of Operations, Amer Daoudi said on Saturday (22 Aug).

To aid Lebanese people, the WFP has diverted a vessel carrying the flour into Beirut port, where the agency’s staff is setting up a temporary warehouse.

“We are in the process of bringing equipment to augment and restore the capacity of Beirut port to handle bulk cargo,” said Daoudi.

Karantina neighbourhood of Beirut is close to the port and was one of the hardest hit by the explosion, taking the brunt of the destruction and numbers of casualties.

At the moment the shockwave from explosion hit him, Omar Hussein, a day labourer was in front of his house in Karantina. He was thrown to the ground by the blast and was covered in broken glass from a window.

In the aftermath of the disaster, Omar and his family are struggling to support themselves.

SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Omar Hussein Day Labourer:
“Even before the explosion, the situation was extremely dire. My wife and I need medicine that costs up to 850,000 LBP and we have no one to support us but God.
My children used to support us with 50-60-70 thousand LBP, but after the protests and spread of COVID-19, they no longer had jobs. This led us to stay without medication for almost 2 months.”

This disaster comes as Lebanon faces its worst ever financial crisis - at a time of soaring unemployment and salary cuts with many families struggling to make ends meet. Currently, more than one million people in Lebanon are living below the poverty line according to the World Bank. For 2020, the World Bank estimates that 1.7 million people will be living in poverty while 841,000 living in extreme poverty.

The pandemic and subsequent lockdown measures have resulted in food becoming a major concern for many people due to rising prices and the devaluation of the Lebanese currency which has lost 80 percent of its value since last October.

WFP plans to gradually expand its existing cash assistance programme in Lebanon to reach more people across the country if resources are secured. This includes vulnerable Beirut residents who have been directly affected by the blasts as well as people across the country who are struggling due to the economic crisis and COVID-19 lockdown measures.

This emergency assistance WFP is launching in Lebanon requires a total of USD 235 million for six months to provide food support to the most vulnerable as well as logistics and supply chain support to the country.
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