Malnutrition killing masses at Africa: UN Report

Tuesday 11 April 2017 2 weeks ago 30   United Nations   Print

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Report  Web desk : GENEVA: The United Nations warned on Tuesday of a growing risk of mass deaths from starvation among people living in conflict and drought-hit areas of the Horn of Africa, Yemen and Nigeria. An "avoidable humanitarian crisis... is fast becoming an inevitability", as the UN faces a "severe" funding shortfall to help people affected by famine, said UN refugee agency spokesperson Adrian Edwards. UNHCR operations in famine-hit Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen are funded at between just three and 11 percent, he said. As a whole, the United Nations has requested $4.4 billion to address the crisis in the four countries, but has so far received only $984 million, UN humanitarian agency spokesperson Jens Laerke said. The current crisis could be worse than the 2011 drought in the Horn of Africa that killed more than 260,000 people, Edwards said. "A repeat must be avoided at all costs." More than 20 million people across Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen, are in areas hit by drought and are experiencing famine or are at high risk of famine, according to UN numbers. 02