Spanish humanitarian emergency operations

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First rescue plane sent by Spain to Kabul lands home in Madrid
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Between January and July 2021, the Humanitarian Action Office of the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), which is responsible for the management and implementation of Spain’s official humanitarian action abroad, managed 11 emergency aid operations worth more than €6 million, most of which went to vulnerable populations in countries without sufficient resources to treat extremely ill patients or the means to establish basic disease prevention measures.

These Covid-19 responses took place in Lebanon, Bolivia, Brazil, India, Nepal, Guatemala, Paraguay and Tunisia.

Among the crises caused by non-natural events, the one resulting from the explosion of a military arsenal in the city of Bata, Equatorial Guinea, led to the largest operation for AECID in 2021. In March, at Equatorial Guinea’s request, the Agency deployed 14 members of the Spanish Technical Aid Response Team, the Spanish Emergency Medical Team, to Bata. The team supported local health workers in caring for the injured and contributed to the rehabilitation of the affected health facilities.

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The bulk of these operations, carried out between January and July 2021, amounted to more than €6 million and were carried out either through direct bilateral relations – country to country; through the activation of emergency agreements with Spanish NGDOs – or by contributing to international humanitarian aid organisations that assess and estimate the costs of the emergency and make international appeals for aid adapted to alleviate the effects of a given crisis on the population.


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Deirdre Tynan is an award-winning journalist who enjoys bringing the best in news reporting to Spain’s largest English-language newspaper, Euro Weekly News. She has previously worked at The Mirror, Ireland on Sunday and for news agencies, media outlets and international organisations in America, Europe and Asia. A huge fan of British politics and newspapers, Deirdre is equally fascinated by the political scene in Madrid and Sevilla. She moved to Spain in 2018 and is based in Jaen.

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