164330 7/31/2008 13:30 08BUCHAREST609 Embassy Bucharest UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY VZCZCXYZ0010 OO RUEHWEB DE RUEHBM #0609 2131330 ZNR UUUUU ZZH O 311330Z JUL 08 FM AMEMBASSY BUCHAREST TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8549 INFO RUEHKV/AMEMBASSY KYIV IMMEDIATE 0079 RUEHCH/AMEMBASSY CHISINAU IMMEDIATE 1344 UNCLAS BUCHAREST 000609
STATE PLEASE PASS TO USAID DHCA/OFDA, RANDREW ALSO FOR EUR/CE, ASCHEIBE
E.O. 12958: N/A TAGS: EAID, SOCI SUBJECT: ROMANIA: DISASTER DECLARATION FOR SIX ROMANIAN COUNTIES
Sensitive but Unclassified, not for Internet distribution.
1. (U) This is an action request. Please see paragraph 6.
2. (SBU) Summary: The Ambassador has determined that severe floods in Northern Romania have created a natural disaster beyond Romania's ability to respond without additional assistance. The Ministry of Interior has requested the assistance of the USG in responding to this disaster. The NGO World Vision is currently active in responding to this emergency situation and would be prepared to accept USG financial support. End Summary
3. (U) Severe flooding in Romania along the Prut, Siret, Suceava, and Tisa Rivers has forced 15,834 individuals to evacuate from their homes in Maramures, Botosani, Bacau, Neamt, Iasi, Vaslui counties. The flooding has killed at least 5 people and already flooded 6,826 homes. According to World Vision, at least 1391 additional families are in areas that continue to be threatened by rising river waters. Flooding is also affecting communities in neighboring Moldova and Ukraine.
4. (U) The Ministry of Interior has requested USG assistance in responding to the disaster. The Ambassador has determined that it would be in the USG's best interest to respond to this request. As an initial response, Post requests the release of USD 50,000 from USAID/OFDA. The NGO World Vision would be the locally operating organization best equipped to manage any disaster relief funds. World Vision is currently at the disaster site and is assisting families with their immediate needs. They plan to primarily direct any USG donations toward families in the village of Coleste, in Iasi County, who are currently in the process of being evacuated. Funds would be used by World Vision to provide emergency food and shelter to the affected families, as well as to establish safe areas for children.
5. (U) The Ministry of Interior has also asked for electric generators and assistance with emergency shelter.
6. (U) Post requests that USAID/OFDA approve a grant of USD 50,000 for World Vision to respond to the current natural disaster in Romania and provide fiscal data and instructions for disbursing the funds to World Vision to assist with immediate relief efforts.