Approx. 750,000 Africans at risk of starvation: UN

Two UN agencies dealing with the fight against poverty and hunger have presented the latest report, according to which 750,000 people in five African countries - Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen are at risk of starvation.

Four consecutive rainy seasons have failed in the Horn of Africa - the worst drought spell in more than 40 years - and a fifth in October-December will probably also look alike.

Drought has combined with a global rise in food and fuel prices, pushed up by the war in Ukraine, to hit millions across the continent, putting food staples out of reach for poor families and killing crops and livestock.

“If the world does not widen its gaze from the war in Ukraine and act immediately, an explosion of child death is about to happen in the Horn of Africa,” Rania Dagash, deputy regional director of UNICEF, told a briefing.

Somalia in deep crisis

As the United Nations' children's agency said on Tuesday, the world must “widen its gaze from the war in Ukraine” to prevent Somalia, one of the endangered counties, from sliding into famine. The organisation pointed out that the country has 386,000 children in urgent need of treatment for life-threatening malnutrition, numbers that are already higher than the 340,000 children who needed treatment in 2011, a year when famine killed hundreds of thousands of people, she said.

“Donor funding has been generous but falls short of the USD 250 mln (EUR 234 mln) needed,” Ms Dagash stressed. “We have just a third of what we need this year.”