UN Releases $100 Million to Stave Off Risk of Famine in 7 Countries

    Wahyu Dwi Anggoro - 18 November 2020 10:05 WIB
    UN Releases $100 Million to Stave Off Risk of Famine in 7 Countries
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    Jakarta: The United Nations (UN) released $100 million of emergency funding on Tuesday to stave off the risk of famine in seven countries most at risk from a hunger epidemic fueled by conflict, economic decline, climate change and the covid-19 pandemic.

    Mark Lowcock, head of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), said $80 million would be split between Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Nigeria, South Sudan and Yemen, which would get the biggest tranche of $30 million.

    A further $20 million had been set aside for Ethiopia, where droughts could worsen an already fragile situation.

    "The prospect of a return to a world in which famines are commonplace would be heart wrenching and obscene in a world where there is more than enough food for everyone," Lowcock said in a statement on Tuesday.

    "Famines result in agonizing and humiliating deaths. They fuel conflict and war. They trigger mass displacement. Their impact on a country is devasting and long lasting. No one should view a slide into famine as an inevitable side effect of this pandemic. If it happens it is because the world has allowed it to happen," he stated.

    Releasing money from the UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) was the quickest and most efficient way to support famine-prevention, with a real risk of famine in parts of Burkina Faso, North-east Nigeria, South Sudan and Yemen, the OCHA statement said. 

    Famine was last declared in 2017 in parts of South Sudan.

    (WAH)

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