Hunger will increase in 22 countries in the coming months, FAO and WFP warn

Rome (EFE) – The acute food insecurity will worsen further in 22 countries, where it is expected to increase in size and severity over the next six months, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Food Program (WFP) warned today.

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Afghanistan, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen remain at the highest level of preparedness, and they are joined by Haiti, Burkina Faso, Mali and Sudan, according to the report published today on the prospects of the so-calledhot spots” or critical points of hunger, in the period from June to November 2023.

This is due to strict restrictions on the movement of people and goods in Haiti, as well as in Burkina Faso and Mali, with the recent outbreak of conflict in Sudan, as there is a risk of the crisis spreading.

Meanwhile, the situation remains worrying in Pakistan, the Central African Republic, Ethiopia, Kenya, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Syria, a warning that also applies to Myanmar in this edition.

All of these “hotspots” have large numbers of people facing critical acute food insecurity, along with exacerbating factors that are expected to further intensify life-threatening conditions in the coming months.

Lebanon, El Salvador and Nicaragua have been added to the list of countries with hunger hotspots since the last report, which covers September 2022, and Malawi, Guatemala and Honduras remain critical hunger countries.

“The worsening of acute food insecurity in hunger hotspots is occurring in the context of a global food crisis,” the report explains, but in addition “new emerging conflicts, particularly the outbreak of conflict in Sudan, are likely to fuel global conflicts and affect several neighboring countries.

Hot spots of hunger

This situation will also affect slowing economies in 2023 and that, despite a year of easing international food prices, domestic prices remain high, leading to an overall reduction in donor support for global hunger relief.

Added to this will be extreme weather events, such as heavy rains, tropical storms, cyclones, floods, droughts, and the outlook “suggests an 82% probability that El Niño conditions will begin between May and July 2023, with significant implications for several hot spots of hunger.”

For this reason, organizations of in the UN They call for “immediate and scaled-up assistance in 18 famine hotspots to protect livelihoods and increase access to food” as “this is critical to prevent further worsening of acute food insecurity and malnutrition”.

“We are at a critical point where we need to look at how we respond. Not only are rural people’s livelihoods their greatest defense against hunger and malnutrition, but providing support in the immediate humanitarian response is cost-effective.” and shocking, said Rein Paulsen, Director of FAO’s Office of Emergencies and Resilience.

Photo: EFE/Kim Ludbrook

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