Somalia: One in four inhabitants at risk of hunger due to drought, according to UN

In a statement released on Monday, December 20, the UN warned of the drought situation in Somalia. One in four people is at risk of going badly from hunger because of it.

It has been three seasons that rainfall has been very low in the country and a fourth is in sight according to the United Nations. A very serious food crisis, which, according to the UN, is likely to worsen. By May 2022, 4.6 million people will need food aid, warns the international institution.

Shortages of food, water and pasture have already forced 169,000 people to leave their homes, a number that could reach 1.4 million within six months, the UN said in its statement.

In recent years, natural disasters – not conflict – have been the main cause of displacement in Somalia, a country ranked among the most vulnerable to climate change.

A call for contributions launched

About 7.7 million people, or nearly half of Somalia’s population (15.9 million), will need humanitarian assistance and protection in 2022, a 30% increase in one year, alert the UN.

Adam Abdelmoula, UN humanitarian coordinator for Somalia, believes that “they will die if we do not help them quickly”, recalling that 300,000 children under five would be exposed to severe malnutrition in the coming months . The UN, which estimates that $ 1.5 billion in aid is necessary to respond to this crisis, is appealing for contributions.

The situation is such that in November 2021, the Somali government declared the drought a humanitarian emergency. Somali Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Crisis Management Khadija Diriye believes that “the risk is so great that without immediate humanitarian assistance children, women and men will start to starve to death in Somalia.”

In addition to the risks of famine, the scarcity of water and food raise fears of a risk of conflict between communities for resources.

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