Entries in Funding (4)


Pakistan Flood Reconstruction Efforts in Need of Funding

U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Joshua Kruger/Released(UNITED NATIONS) -- The UN special envoy for assistance to Pakistan has said that more needs to be done to help those affected by last year's devastating flood.  The comments by Rauf Engin Soysal came as Pakistan marked the first anniversary of the country's "worst ever" floods, that inundated a large part of the country.

"We certainly need to do more, we certainly need to draw lessons, yet we certainly need to keep up the momentum to continue to deliver the promises we made one year ago to our brothers and sisters in Pakistan."

Floods that struck Pakistan last year represented one of the most devastating natural disasters of the decade, submerging almost one-fifth of the country, killing 200 people, affecting 20 million, and destroying 1.6 million homes.  Reconstruction is predicted to cost up to 10.9 billion US dollars -- almost one quarter of Pakistan's national budget.

Zafar Iqbal Qadir is the chairman of Pakistan's National Disaster Management Authority.

"To the extent of providing proper housing to all the affectees, yes it has not been possible for the government so far, but that needs a huge amount of money which we still do not have at an our disposal."

It is unclear how Pakistan will come up with the money, and some flood victims complain that corruption has prevented them from benefiting from the funds that are available.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Auditors in China Uncover 'Embezzled' Millions for High-Speed Rail

STR/AFP/Getty Images(BEIJIING) -- State auditors in China found $28.5 million intended to fund the development of a high-speed railway between Beijing and Shanghai to be stolen by construction companies and other individuals, reports the BBC.

The project, which began in 2008, is due to be completed in June 2011 -- one year ahead of the projected finish date.

Officials said Wednesday that irregularities had been detected over a three-month period of the rail's construction in 2010, according to the Financial Times

This kind of corruption is not uncommon to China's railway industry.  Just last month, the country's railway minister was dismissed in connection with corruption claims.

The state audit office has handed the case over to the Chinese judicial system for a formal investigation.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


WikiLeaks Continues Fight to Stay Online

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Photo Courtesy - LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The controversial website WikiLeaks is in a fight to stay online.

The site has been dropped by its main server in France, at least temporarily preventing many people from accessing its trove of secret U.S. government documents.

It has also lost a major source of funding. The online payment service PayPal has shut down WikiLeaks’ account on the site, saying that the website is engaged in illegal activity.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


US Boosts Counterterrorism Funding to Yemen in Recent Years

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The U.S. has boosted counterterrorism funding for Yemen in recent years, in addition to the annual baseline funding provided by the State Department. This year was the highest amount by far, a total of $155 million. Baseline funds will increase from $72.3 million this year, to a requested $106.6 million for fiscal year 2011. In 2008, it was only $17.2 million.

The counterterrorism funding is known as Section 1026 funding -- named for the section in the law that allows the State Dept. and the Pentagon to provide the funding to the countries they choose. International Security Assistance Force Commander Gen. David Petraeus made the recommendation earlier this year to boost the counterterrorism funding to Yemen when he was in charge of Yemen as CENTCOM Commander, and both the State Dept. and the Pentagon agreed.

Total assistance to Yemen for FY 2010 -- including security, humanitarian, and bilateral aid, was $296 million.

The State Department says that its FY 2011 request for total aid to Yemen will be around the same level.

While the State Dept. is sending two special agents from its Bureau of Diplomatic Security to Yemen to aid in an FBI-led investigation of last week's plot, officials say the U.S. embassy in Sana'a has not altered its security posture or modified staffing as a result of last week's events. No new travel warnings, alerts, or warden messages are planned.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio 

ABC News Radio