UN agencies call for urgent response to looming famine in Ethiopia's Tigray region

Jun 11, 2021

UN agencies call for urgent response to looming famine in Ethiopia's Tigray region

Geneva (Switzerland), June 11: Three UN agencies on Thursday jointly called on the global community to take "urgent action" in Ethiopia's conflict-torn Tigray region, where more than 350,000 people are facing famine conditions due to lack of access to the area and regional hostilities.
The joint appeal was made by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), the World Food Program (WFP) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
"UNICEF is extremely concerned about the situation across Tigray as we see more and more young children and babies slide dangerously close to sickness and potential death from malnutrition," said UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore in a statement.
The multi-partner Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) initiative cited recent reports from northern Ethiopia on Thursday, according to which an estimated 350,000 people are facing catastrophic food shortages unparalleled for a decade.
In the IPC's classification, the "Emergency" level of acute food insecurity in Tigray proves that the local populations "need urgent support so lives are saved and widespread deaths are prevented."
According to the IPC, 5.5 million people are threatened by acute food insecurity in the region and the situation could deteriorate further if no actions are taken.
Reacting to these reports, the UNICEF said it would ramp up its emergency nutrition situation response, focusing on children suffering from severe malnutrition.
The agency said that 10.7 million U.S. dollars were needed to provide therapeutic food for children and asked for "unfettered access" to the area, arguing that 33,000 people might die there if they do not receive urgent treatment.
Source: Xinhua