21st April 2021
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WFP asks for $5.5bn to tackle famine

Author: Staff Writer | Published: Friday, March 12, 2021

Children eat porridge their mother cooked with the food she received at a World Food Program (WFP) distribution site in Pibor, South Sudan | Credit | Marwa Awad

The executive director of the World Food Program (WFP) has called for urgent funds to prevent a looming famine.

David Beasley made the appeal on Thursday during a UN Security Council session on food security and maintaining international peace and stability in New York.

Armed conflict, climate extremes and the COVID-19 pandemic, have reportedly threatened to push more people food insecure, from 135 million people last year to 270 million in 2021.

In his address, Beasley said he thought that Covid-19 would be behind us and that the economies and systems would be surging back to normal.

Unfortunately, he said, new waves of the virus have been unrelenting and the concerns of 2020 are now a reality for 2021.

“We ask Security Council Members to provide $5.5 billion, immediately, to avoid multiple famines around the world,” Beasley told the council.

“I urge you to open your hearts, show compassion, and to give and to give generously.”

Out of the 270 million people that are expected to go hungry by the end of this year, the UN says 7.2 million people are in South Sudan.

The WFP chief mentioned Pibor as one of the most hunger-hit areas in the country, saying “Mothers are resorting to feeding their children with the skin of dead animals – or even mud.”

Other countries with food insecure people are Ethiopia, DR Congo, and Yemen.

“The Security Council has a moral obligation to do everything in your power to end these wars. But until we can achieve that, we need you to give us the funds to stop millions of people from dying from starvation,” he added.

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