HL Deb 11 November 1999 vol 606 cc235-6WA
Lord Judd

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What is their latest assessment of the number of people within Kosovo who will be without adequate accommodation during the coming winter; and what action they are taking with others to alleviate distress [HL4528]

Baroness Amos

Over 100,000 houses in Kosovo suffered damage in the conflict, of which half are beyond repair. This affects over 700,000 people. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the European Community Humanitarian Office (ECHO) and United States Agency for International Development (USAID) are distributing emergency repair kits and roofing repair kits in order to create dry shelter in repairable houses, on the basis of one room per family. UNHCR is also identifying up to 20,000 places in community shelter. Forty thousand families are expected to host displaced people. Winterised tents are being distributed as a stop-gap measure, together with stoves and firewood.

We are supporting emergency rehabilitation to restore essential community and public infrastructure, particularly power and water supplies. We have also committed £3 million for emergency work on Pristina airport to keep essential supplies coming into Kosovo and enable 24-hour civil air access during the winter months.