Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Aid to Sudan.

21.

asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if he has any proposals to respond to the latest crisis in Juba in Sudan.

The Government have already allocated a total of £125,000 to date in 1989 in support of famine relief activities in southern Sudan of which £75,000 went to Concern and £50,000 to UNICEF. We will continue to monitor the situation in Juba and southern Sudan in general using all the sources of information available to us and will be prepared to consider the need for a further response should the circumstances so warrant.

Has the Minister of State had specific requests from the agencies who have been highlighting the deteriorating situation in Sudan in recent weeks in the media?

I have had requests from Trócaire and GOAL. I met Mr. John O'Shea of GOAL following his recent visit to Sudan and I had a long discussion with him about the problem. The question of assistance is under consideration.

This is the fifth or sixth time in as many months that we have had to consider giving emergency aid to trouble spots in the world and I should like to ask the Minister of State if he accepts that the derisory allocation of £1,000 under the head of "Emergency" in the Estimates for his Department is being shown up time and again to be totally inadequate.

The Deputy is expanding the scope of the question which relates to a particular area. We have already discussed the other matters referred to by the Deputy.

Comments like those made by the Deputy amuse me because the factual position is that in addition to the relief provided for Sudan a further £275,000 was allocated for assistance elsewhere in the world. That should take care of allegations made by the Deputy regarding the £1,000.