The matter is complex. I will try to outline it. In January I met a Mr. Williamson, Secretary General in the Office of the President of the Commission. He said he was impressed with the arguments put forward by both Ireland and Portugal which also suffered flooding and that he would make a recommendation to the Commission and the Parliament on the subject. He explained then, and the problem still exists, that there was no budget line in the 1996 budget for humanitarian aid of this kind, contrary to the situation in 1995 when there was a budget line from which my predecessor was able to obtain some funds for the west.
The chairman of the budget committee of the Parliament, Mr. Samland, was not disposed towards introducing a budget line for this purpose, but I met him last week for a general discussion about the 1997 EU budget with which we will be very involved. I spoke to him and to the rapporteur, Mr. Brinkhorst, at length about this, and they have promised to look at the matter again. They are coming here on 15 May for a general meeting about next year's budget and have undertaken to give me some feedback about whether they can introduce a budget line to deal with this by 15 May. That is the current position.
I am not aware exactly how many people have made inquiries to the Red Cross, but I understand it is in excess of 100.