Conflict, floods and COVID-19 push South Sudanese into extreme hunger

At least 6 dead after Vicky onslaught: officials

Tropical depression Vicky left at least 6 dead in Leyte and Agusan del Sur as it inundated the southern Philippines ahead of Christmas, officials said Sunday. Three people were reported dead in Mahaplag, Leyte, said national disaster council spokesman Mark Timbal.

Another 3 died and 1 was reported missing in Agusan del Sur, said Gov. Santiago Cane. All victims were from San Francisco town and died from drowning, Cane said. Two had attempted to cross a river and a third forced his motorcycle to cross a flooded highway along with his wife who was rescued, he said.

“Lahat po ng calamities dito sa’min ay year-round po namin pinaghahandaan. The kind of rain we had the other day was quite strong, very heavy, naka-red warning na po kami (we were under a red alert warning), very rare yan mangyayari (it’s very rare to happen),” Cane told ABS-CBN’s TeleRadyo…

Conflict, floods and COVID-19 push South Sudanese into extreme hunger

WFP/Marwa Awad
Children eat porridge their mother cooked with the food she received at a World Food Programme (WFP) distribution site in Pibor, South Sudan.

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), World Food Programme (WFP) and other humanitarian aid organizations, are scaling up their responses to save lives and avert a total collapse of livelihoods in hard-to-reach areas.

“We call on all parties to stop the violence and to ensure safe humanitarian access in order to prevent an already dire situation from turning into a full-blown catastrophe”, said South Sudan’s FAO Representative Meshack Malo. 

A new UN-backed Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) report projects that from April to July 2021, an estimated 7.24 million people, or 60 per cent of the country’s population, face either a state of official food crisis, or worsening acute food insecurity.

“The coming year will be extremely tough, but we are determined to do all we can to reach more people for longer periods of time”, said Makena Walker, WFP’s Deputy Country Director. 

IPC figures – which estimate that between October and November, 6.5 million people in South Sudan faced severe acute food insecurity – follow two independent reports published by the IPC Global Support Unit last week, indicated that tens of thousands are likely to face famine conditions in Jonglei state’s Pibor county, where many families are experiencing high levels of acute malnutrition and even death….

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