About 60% of the world’s undernourished people live in conflict-affected areas. speakadded that “no country is immune”.
Conflict means hunger
Last year, most of the 140 million people suffering from hunger worldwide lived in just 10 countries: Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Ethiopia, Haiti, Nigeria, Pakistan, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria and Yemen – eight of which are on the Council’s agenda.
“There is no doubt: when this Council debates conflict, you argue about famine. When you make decisions about peacekeeping and political missions, you make decisions about hunger. And When you don’t reach consensus, the hungry will pay a heavy price‘, spelled Mr. Guterres.
Although happy to announce that the Central Emergency Response Fund is releasing $30 million to meet food security needs in Niger, Mali, Chad and Burkina Faso, he sadly said: “But it is a drops of sea water”.
Urgent hunger level
The head of the United Nations expressed concern about food insecurity in the Horn of Africa, which is suffering the longest drought in four decades, affecting more than 18 million people. Continuous conflict and insecurity afflict the people of Ethiopia and Somalia.
Globally, 44 million people in 38 countries are at an urgent level of hunger, known as IPC 4 – just a step away from hunger.
More than half a million people in Ethiopia, South Sudan, Yemen and Madagascar are already in IPC Level 5: catastrophic conditions or starvation.
‘Incredible new size’
“The war in Ukraine is now adding a terrifying new dimension to the picture of global hunger“The head of the United Nations said.
The Russian invasion meant a sharp drop in food exports and caused price increases of up to 30% for staple foods, threatening people in countries across Africa and the Middle East.
The leaders of Senegal, Niger and Nigeria confirmed to Mr. Guterres that they were on the verge of destruction.
While UN humanitarian operations are working to help, they are also suffering the effects of rising food prices, including in East Africa, where the cost of food assistance has increased by an average of 65%. in the last year.
Feeding the hungry is an investment in global peace and security – UN chief
Breaking the ‘deadly cave’
The top UN official has outlined four actions countries can take to break the “deadly dynamic of conflict and hunger,” starting with investing in political solutions. to end conflicts, prevent new conflicts and build lasting peace.
“Most importantly, we need to end the war in Ukraine“, he said, calling on the Council to do everything in its power “to silence the gun and promote peace, in Ukraine and everywhere”.
Second, he stressed the importance of protecting the right to humanitarian access and essential goods and supplies to civilians, noting the “critical role members play in demanding compliance with human rights laws.” international standards and prosecute them for violations”.
Third, he said that “more coordination and leadership is needed” to reduce risks associated with food, energy and financial insecurity, reminding that “any meaningful solution to global food insecurity would require the re-integration of Ukrainian agricultural production and Russian and Belarusian food and fertilizer production into world markets – despite the war“.
Finally, it is “more necessary than ever” that donors fully fund humanitarian appeals with official development assistance.
“Redirecting priorities to other priorities is not an option while the world is on the brink of mass starvation… Feeding the hungry is an investment in global peace and security,” said General. secretary said.
In a world of abundance, no one should accept “a child, a woman or a man” dying of hunger, including “members of this Council”‘, he concluded.
UN / Ekinder Debebe
‘March to starve’
Head of the World Food Program (WFP), David Beasley, has spoken extensively about the “perfect storm” of hunger, namely conflict, climate change, and the COVID pandemic.
Urgent action today – Head of WFP
He cited the destabilizing forces in Mali, Chad, Malawi and Burkina Faso; riots and demonstrations in Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Pakistan and Peru; conflicts in Ethiopia and Afghanistan; droughts and famines in Africa, and the “ring of fire around the world” as the number of people continues to “march to death” is increasing.
“Food security is important for peace and stability“Globally, he emphasized.
The head of WFP said 276 million people are struggling to find food and 49 million people in 43 countries are “knocking on the door of hunger”, which leads not only to death but also “unmatched migration”. destabilize society.
And while the “perfect storm” has led to an increase in food prices by 2022, he said Food availability will be a major concern in 2023.
Mr. Beasley stressed the importance of increasing production, opening Ukraine’s ports and clearing Ukraine’s bunkers to stabilize the market and solve the global food crisis.
“Act with urgency today,” he told the Council.
UN photo / Ekinder Debebe
The Food and Agriculture Organization of (FAO) The general manager, Qu Dongyu, discussed the importance of people, peace, prosperity and the planet.
“Around the world, prosperity is being reversed, “I said. “There is less food security, health security and income” while inequality becomes larger.
He pointed to “a spike in severe global hunger,” with 2022 threatening to worsen even further.
While FAO has strengthened agricultural systems to save lives and protect the livelihoods of the most vulnerable, “more needs to be done”, according to the organization’s top official, who called Conflict is the “biggest cause of hunger”.
Protect your neighbors
While, Ukraine war is impacting world with ‘historically high’ food and energy pricesAccording to Mr. Qu – “putting the global harvest season at risk”.
He reminds us that we “are neighbors on this small planet village. What happens to one affects us all” and marks the need to stop growing food insecurity in the months and years to come.
“We must protect people, agri-food systems and economies from future shocks… Sustainable productivity gains, [and] strengthen capacity to provide related services,” said Mr. Qu.
UN photo / Manuel Elias
‘Play our part’
No one needs to go hungry “if we all play our part”, he added, describing investing in the agri-food system as “more relevant than ever”.
Concluding his speech with a poem in Chinese, the head of the FAO said:
“High mountain. Humans depend on food to survive. We need to always unite and work together to serve millions of people around the world.”
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