According to a new UN assessment, nearly half of Somalia’s population, around 7.1 million people, suffer from hunger.
And the United Nations warned, for the most affected of the 213,000, the situation is now catastrophic and urgent, stressing that the World Food Program is engaged in a race against time to avoid famine in Somalia in the context of an unprecedented drought.
“We must act immediately to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe,” Al-Khader Daloum, WFP’s country director for Somalia, said in a statement.
The lives of the most vulnerable are already threatened by malnutrition and starvation, and we cannot wait for the famine to start to act. “It is a race against time to prevent starvation,” he added.
+ “The worst drought in 40 years” +
For his part, the FAO representative in Somalia, Etienne Peterschmidt, announced that less than 20% of the funds needed to avert famine had been collected, putting hundreds of thousands of people at “great risk” .. real famine and death.
“We call on the international community to act quickly while we still have hope of preventing (…) widespread famine in Somalia,” he insisted.
Several successive rainy seasons failed in the Horn of Africa, causing the worst drought in 40 years and a major food crisis affecting Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia. In Somalia, several areas are threatened by famine, especially in the south where the presence of Al-Shabab terrorists affiliated with Al-Qaeda makes it difficult for humanitarian aid to reach.
Since mid-2021, three million head of livestock have died due to drought, a disastrous outcome for a largely pastoral country where families depend on their herds for meat, milk and trade. Food prices have also risen, buoyed by poor local harvests and rising import costs caused in part by the conflict in Ukraine.
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