FAO and WFP report reveals that conflict-driven hunger worsens

Sad scenes of Somalia, PHOTO: Somalia media

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA (ADV) – According to a new report released today by the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP), the situation in the eight places in the world with the highest number of people in need of emergency food support shows that the link between conflict and hunger remains all too persistent and deadly.

The report was prepared for the UN Security Council which in May adopted a landmark resolution on preventing hunger in conflict zones.

The report suggests that the situation in Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Sudan and Yemen worsened in the latter part of 2018 largely because of conflict, while Somalia, Syria and the Lake Chad Basin have seen some improvements in line with improved security.

It further states that in total, around 56 million people are in need of urgent food and livelihood assistance across the eight conflict zones.

“This report clearly demonstrates the impact of armed violence on the lives and livelihoods of millions of men, women, boys and girls caught up in conflict,” FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva states in the report foreword.

“I would strongly encourage you to keep in mind that behind these seemingly dry statistics are real people experiencing rates of hunger that are simply unacceptable in the 21st century.”

The report also mentions that violence against humanitarian workers is growing, sometimes forcing organizations to suspend operations and deprive vulnerable populations of humanitarian assistance.

According to World Food Programme Executive Director David Beasley in the foreword, in 2018, aid workers and facilities were attacked in all the countries covered in the report.

“This report shows again the tragic link between conflict and hunger and how it still pervades far too much of the world. We need better and quicker access in all conflict zones, so we can get to more of the civilians who need our help. But what the world needs most of all is an end to the wars.”

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