Angelina Jolie is reaching out to the victims of devastating flooding in the Balkans with a $50,000 (£29,594) donation to the American Red Cross. Torrential rain has hit vast areas of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia, causing flooding and landslides and forcing thousands of residents to flee their homes. As the death toll is estimated to have hit more than 50, Jolie has donated the huge sum to boost the relief effort across the region, which was torn apart by conflict throughout the 1990s.
A statement from the star reads: “It is tragic that a region that has seen so much conflict and devastation has now been struck by natural disaster on this scale. My thoughts are with all the families that have seen their homes and livelihoods swept and away and lost loved ones. “I am particularly concerned by the immediate threat to life posed by mines and unexploded ordinance in areas that have been ravaged by the floods in Bosnia. The damage left by the war is literally lying just beneath the surface of the country, and the international community must take action to help secure these areas. “It is inspiring see people in both countries come together to support their neighbors and fellow citizens. It is time for all of us to do the same, and to step up and help with the recovery. As well as addressing immediate needs, a long-term effort will be needed to repair homes and rebuild infrastructure. We must all be ready to stand by these communities for the long-haul.”
Jolie has strong ties to the area, having written, produced and directed In the Land of Blood and Honey, which dealt with the sexual violence inflicted on a woman during the Bosnian crisis.