Somalia – aid agencies say new food crisis approaching

Reuters Africa

NAIROBI (Reuters) – A deadly combination of conflict, poor rainfall and a predicted late harvest threatens to push hundreds of thousands of Somalis back into hunger, undermining aid efforts put in place during last year’s drought, Save the Children warned on Thursday.

The humanitarian agency said many of the 1.4 million Somalis displaced by conflict and drought will bear the brunt of the new crisis since they rely on good harvests to keep food prices low.

“(Last year’s) crisis has left a huge amount of Somali families unable to cope with the effects of drought one year on,” said Sonia Zambakides, humanitarian director for Save the Children’s Somalia programme.

The charity has asked for more funding and fresh efforts by the international community to tackle the underlying causes of Somalia’s regular food crises.

“We need a step-change in approach towards Somalia: a shift away from simply responding to hunger emergencies towards a long-term commitment to tackle the issues that give rise to them,” Zambakides said.

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