EU Commissioner Stylianides addresses high-level aid conference in Dubai

Providing food vouchers in Lebanon to Syrian refugees Photo credit: WFP/Rein Skullerud

This year’s annual edition of the Dubai International Humanitarian Aid and Development Conference (DIHAD) is taking place within the context of growing complexities for the humanitarian community faced with an increasing number of severe humanitarian emergencies.

Christos Stylianides, EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management delivered a keynote speech at the conference:

We live in a turbulent world and 2014 was no exception. We witnessed conflicts and humanitarian crises which have led to human suffering on an unprecedented scale. Syria, Iraq, Central African Republic and South Sudan are four of the UN’s highest emergency level crises that shook the world all at the same time, while the deadly Ebola epidemic hit West Africa in an extraordinary way.

Stressing the need to diversify partnerships and work together to achieve a more sustainable type of aid, Stylianides said: “Today more than ever, we need to reach out across borders and beyond traditional modes of operation, to improve our principled humanitarian approach and improve the lives of victims of disaster. We also need to build on the links between humanitarian and development aid, to ensure sustainability and resilience of affected populations.

The Dubai International Humanitarian Aid and Development Conference (DIHAD) is an annual conference which brings together a wide range of organisations within the international development and humanitarian community. It aims to build bridges between organisations and countries from around the globe engaged in addressing needs of those affected by crises. The 12th DIHAD’s underlying theme is “Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability: The Humanitarian Aid and Development Perspectives”.

Read the full speech by Commissioner Stylianides here.