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Taiwan to build 400 shelters for Philippine conflict victims

2018/07/21 17:12:43

Photo courtesy of Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in the Philippines

Manila, July 21 (CNA) Taiwan on Friday broke ground on a project to build 400 temporary housing units for victims of the Marawi conflict, a five-month armed battle that ended late last year in the Philippines.

The groundbreaking ceremony was held on the construction site in Rorogagus East, Marawi City, and attended by Taiwan's representative to the Philippines Michael Hsu (徐佩勇) as well as local city officials.

The project is a collaborative effort between the Taiwan government and the Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation, also of Taiwan, Hsu said.

He said his office will work closely with the Philippine government to ensure that the project is completed on schedule so that the victims can resume a normal life as soon as possible.

The temporary housing project is part of a humanitarian effort to help Marawi City recover from the devastating conflict, which left some 350,000 individuals displaced, according to data released by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in February.

In January, Taiwan launched a relief effort that included sending 10,780 tons of rice to people affected by the conflict.

In May last year, a pro-ISIS group called Maute, which is based in the Philippines, attacked and besieged the city of Marawi.

The battle that later ensued between government forces and the militants lasted for five months before the city was liberated from the ISIS-linked group in late October.

(By Emerson Lim and Ko Lin)