Philippine Ambassador to the UAE Ferdinand Alfonso Ver (centre) with the Etihad plane carrying the relief goods from the UAE.


UAE sends 50 tonnes of food, medicine for Mayon volcano victims in Philippines

The UAE sent a plane carrying 50 tonnes of food supplies and medicine to help thousands of people affected by the Mayon Volcano in Albay province in the Philippines.

The relief arrived on Monday (June 12) onboard an Etihad Airways plane at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, said Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Rex Gatchalian.

“We thank the UAE government and the Royal family for their generosity in sending the much-needed humanitarian aid for those affected by Mayon’s volcanic activities,” Gatchalian said.

Gatchalian said His Excellency Mohamed Obaid Salem Alqataam Alzaabi, UAE Ambassador to the Philippines, requested the sending of humanitarian aid from his government amid the forced evacuations in Albay province due to the possible eruption of Mount Mayon.

Heeding the request, the UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, immediately ordered the shipment of the humanitarian aid to the Philippines within 24 hours, he said.

Mohamed Obaid Al Zaabi, UAE Ambassador to the Philippines, said, “Sending aid to the Philippines comes as an extension of the strong relations between our two nations in several fields and embodies the UAE leadership’s keenness to contribute to alleviating the severity of disasters and humanitarian crises around the world. This underscores the UAE’s established values in strengthening the international response to crises and disasters, providing for peoples’ basic needs – especially food supplies – required by affected populations, and delivering urgent relief to countries in times of need.”

The UAE’s interior minister, Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, also helped in the swift arrival of the humanitarian aid, said DSWD Secretary Gatchalian.

He added that the relief goods sent by the UAE will be transported to Bicol within 24 hours, and should be received by victims by Wednesday morning.

The Mayon volcano began to expel lava on Sunday night. More than 13,000 people living within a 6km radius of the volcano’s crater have been forced to evacuate since volcanic activity increased last week. ICA/Expat Media

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