UN food agency launches emergency Africa appeal
The UN food agency on Friday appealed to oil- and mineral-rich nations to set up a fund to combat the food crisis gripping the Sahel desert region and other parts of Africa.
Speaking at a conference in the Congolese capital Brazzaville, UN Food and Agriculture Organisation head Jose Graziano Da Silva said the group needed $110 million (83 million euros) to combat the crisis in the short term.
The Sahel, which comprises Chad, Mali, Burkina Faso, Mauritania and Niger, has been hit with drought and conflict, and the United Nations estimates that several million people face food insecurity.
“We’re especially worried about the Sahel because there are already a lot of conflicts in that region, which risks seeing additional fighting if the famine spreads,” Da Silva said.
The United Nations also fears for Sudan and South Sudan and countries of the Horn of Africa that have also been hit with drought and fighting.
Da Silva said the United Nations was appealing to countries that export oil and other natural resources. He was speaking on the final day of a UN conference on Africa.
The FAO estimates that some 925 million of the world’s people regularly go hungry, 265 million of them in Africa.