Crisis in Sudan: the country is on the verge of famine

Кризис в Судане: страна находится на пороге голода

Displaced children are screened for malnutrition in River Nile State, Sudan. Crisis in Sudan: the country is on the verge of famine Peace and Security

Eleven months of intense fighting in Sudan have created a food crisis, with famine expected to hit some areas by early May. Representatives of UN humanitarian agencies warned about this at a Security Council meeting on Wednesday.

“As the first anniversary of the conflict approaches, we cannot begin to imagine the desperation facing civilians in Sudan,” said Edem Wosorn of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), one of three senior officials who spoke at the meeting.

The meeting was convened after OCHA presented an official report on the food crisis in Sudan last Friday. This was done in accordance with the Security Council resolution, which requires the UN Secretary-General to immediately report the emergence of a risk of famine caused by the conflict and widespread food insecurity.

Agricultural crisis

As a result of the armed conflict between the Sudanese army and the paramilitary forces of the Rapid Reaction Force, 18 million people – more than a third of the country’s population – are faced with severe food shortages. Most of these people live in Darfur and Kordofan, as well as in the states of Khartoum and Al Jazeera.

The fighting has led to limited agricultural production, damage to key agricultural infrastructure, sharp rises in prices and disruption of trade chains.

Maurizio Martina, Deputy Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) ), said the fighting was spreading to the southeastern states, the country’s breadbasket, which accounts for half of all wheat production.

An FAO report released this week said , that cereal production in Sudan fell by 46 percent last year.

Increasing rates of malnutrition

Currently, about 730 thousand Sudanese suffer from malnutrition, which is growing at an alarming rate and is already claiming lives. Eden Wosornu cited a recent report from Doctors Without Borders that found a child dies every two hours in the Zamzam camp in North Darfur.

“Our humanitarian partners estimate that as many as 222,000 children could die from malnutrition in the coming weeks and months,” she said.

Earlier this month, the Security Council passed a resolution calling for full and unhindered humanitarian access to Sudan, but humanitarian officials say there has been “no serious progress on the ground.”

Lack of access and resources

Deputy Executive Director of the UN World Food Program (WFP) Karl Skau drew the attention of the Security Council to the wider regional context of the food crisis. Seven million people in South Sudan and nearly three million in Chad also face severe food insecurity, he said. – lack of access and resources.

“If we are to prevent the situation in Sudan from becoming the world’s largest food crisis, we urgently need a coordinated diplomatic effort. It is necessary for all parties to ensure unrestricted access across borders and lines of contact,” said Karl Skau.

Read also:

UN chief on the situation in Sudan: the time has come to lay down arms


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