NEW: The UK plans to cut funding by 60% to the United Nations children's agency (@UNICEF) & to its global development programme (@UNDP) in a move that will have "serious consequences" for vulnerable children & cost lives, the organisations warn
#UKAid 1/
Director of advocacy for @UNICEF_uk - @jo_rea - said she understood @BorisJohnson's government had to make difficult choices on where to spend a reduced overseas aid budget.
"But we were hoping that these cuts would not fall on the shoulders of the world's children." 2/
. @UlrikaModeer of the United Nations Development Programme (@UNDP), said the funding cut would be particularly harmful during a pandemic. "It is like cutting the lifeline to people & countries that are in the midst of the worst crisis that they have experienced." 3/
The cuts are latest to emerge as @FCDOGovUK axes £4bn+ from its annual overseas aid budget following a decision by @BorisJohnson to reduce an aid-spending target (despite it being enshrined in law) to 0.5% of national income from 0.7% because of the economic hit from #COVID19. 4/
Many charities & UN agencies are being affected, with criticism mounting on the UK at a time when other world powers are increasing overseas assistance and as @DominicRaab prepares to host the first in-person meeting of @G7 foreign ministers this coming week. 5/
. @UNICEF said UK informed the agency its core funding will shrink to £16m in 2021 from £40m last year. The UK is one of UNICEF's largest donors
For @UNDP, the funding cuts they know about so far equate to a reduction of £33m - falling to £22m this year from £55m previously. 6/

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More from @haynesdeborah

2 May
NEW: Asked by @SophyRidgeSky if he's "comfortable" with a 60% cut in #UKAid funding to @UNICEF “falling on the shoulders of children”, @DominicRaab says "I've found the process of making those savings v difficult" but UK's still spending £1.3b on global public health projects 1/
Foreign Secretary repeats the government's reasoning for slashing UK overseas aid by £4b+ because of economic squeeze from pandemic, saying UK is still spending £10b on aid & is 3rd largest donor in @G7. He also insists spending is being done "with a more strategic approach" 2/
Asked if cuts are designed to minimise the harm, @DominicRaab says: "What I did at the start of the process is to set seven priorities from climate finance and climate change through to humanitarian support and relief and made sure rather than salami slicing budgets... 3/
Read 7 tweets
1 May
BREAKING: The United Nations children’s agency (@UNICEF) has warned of “serious consequences” for vulnerable infants around the world after learning that the UK plans to shrink its core funding by around 60% as part of sweeping cuts to the #UKAid budget 1/
Such funding enabled @UNICEF to respond swiftly to the most pressing “education, protection & health needs” of children impacted by COVID19 last year, the organisation said on its website. “Any cuts to these funds will have serious consequences for children” 2/
UNICEF said @FCDOGovUK had informed it on Friday of the planned reduction in core funding. I understand the agency was told to expect to receive £16mln this year down from £40mln in 2020
“We are deeply concerned by this decision,” UNICEF said. 3/
Read 5 tweets
28 Apr
BREAKING: The UK has imposed a “devastating” cut of about 85% in aid to a @UNFPA family planning programme in the world’s poorest nations – money that could have helped prevent some 250,000 maternal and child deaths, @SkyNews understands 1/
The UK is the biggest donor to the @UNFPA Supplies programme, which also seeks to reduce unintended pregnancies & unsafe abortions.
But an initial commitment to spent £155 million this year – cash that had been expected - has been shrunk to just £23 million, the agency says 2/
£130mln (the amount that's being cut) could have helped to prevent around 250,000 maternal & child deaths, 14.6 million unintended pregnancies & 4.3 million unsafe abortions. “This will have a devastating impact on women, girls and their families across the world” @UNFPA said 3/
Read 6 tweets
27 Apr
NEW: Impact of £4bln+ UK foreign aid cuts starting to emerge. UK to cut direct funding on water & sanitation projects in developing countries by more than 80%, despite handwashing being critical defence in fight against coronavirus, leaked memo reveals 1/
Also this devastating revelation h/t @willrworley: UK to slash funding for polio eradication by 95% (from £100mln to £5 mln) in "catastrophic" move that will hamper efforts to eliminate a disease, which mainly affects children & causes paralysis 2/
🚨@AlokSharma_RDG - any response to polio fund cuts? In 2019 as International Development Secretary you said: "If we were to pull back on immunisations, in a decade we could see 200,000 new cases each year, which would be a tragedy for the children & families affected" + the🌎3/
Read 5 tweets
19 Apr
NEW: Czech foreign minister @jhamacek says he'd like the UK & other allies to expel Russian diplomats in a show of support over an alleged attack on Czech soil in 2014 by the same suspected Russian intelligence officers who are accused of the Salisbury spy poisonings 1/
Jan Hamacek told @SkyNews: “We really appreciate the voice of the UK & we are hearing similar support from the EU & the US. We would obviously ask for solidarity & I have asked my colleagues also to consider expelling other Russian officials that operate on their territory." 2/
The Czech foreign minister continued: "But that’s obviously a decision to be made by those individual countries... We ask for solidarity, either verbal or in terms of expelling Russian officials as well.” 3/
Read 6 tweets
18 Apr
NEW: Strong language from @TomTugendhat on @SkyNews after Czech Republic revealed 2 prime suspects in Salisbury spy poisoning are also wanted over a deadly 2014 blast at Czech ammunition depot: "If that isn’t a war-like act, frankly I have difficulty in knowing what one is" 1/
Mr Tugendhat, chair of @CommonsForeign, said: "We’re seeing a pattern of behaviour by Russia – or rather by President Putin – which is frankly if not an act of war then certainly warlike. And it’s extremely damaging not just to European people but also to the Russian people" 2/
. @TomTugendhat alleged: "This is fundamentally and simply about Putin & his cabal. I will not be satisfied until we have seen all of the money that Putin has stolen off the Russian people detailed and on the front page of every newspaper." 3/
Read 6 tweets

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