United Nations’ briefing on Conflict and Food Security

Man holding an empty bowl Man holding an empty bowl Photo by Haseeb Jamil on Unsplash

11 March 2021

The United Nations’ Secretary-General Antonio Guterres held a briefing l on conflict and food security. 

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has expressed his concerns in an urgent appeal to all countries that are part of the United Nations, in the hope to bring once again the attention on one of the most critical aspects present in all humanitarian crises the world is currently facing: hunger. Mr. Guterres listed a series of countries that are facing death and general collapse due to famine and the resulting malnutrition, among which Yemen, the Sahel, the Horn of Africa, South Sudan and Afghanistan. In an effort to provide punctual data around the situation, Guterres gave relevant information about the numbers and percentages of people suffering from hunger. 

Guterres stated parts of Yemen, South Sudan and Burkina Faso are in the grip of famine or famine-like conditions, indeed,  more than 150,000 people are at risk of starving. In Yemen, five years of conflict have displaced 4 million people across the country. Many Yemenis are facing a death sentence as widespread hunger stalks their nation. Around half of all children under five – 2.3 million – are projected to face acute malnutrition in 2021. Some 16 million people face food insecurity. South Sudan is facing its highest levels of food insecurity since the country declared independence ten years ago, with 60% of the population increasingly suffering from hunger.

In this occasion, the Secretary-General also announced the establishment of a High-Level Task Force on Preventing Famine, led by his Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Mark Lowcock. This task force will include representatives from the World Food Programme and the Food and Agriculture Organization. It will bring coordinated, high-level attention to famine prevention, and mobilize support to the most affected countries.

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Author:Benedetta Spizzichino; Editor: Eleonora Gonnelli

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