South Sudan and deaths from starvation

South Sudan and deaths from starvation

Sawako Utsumi and Sawako Uchida

Modern Tokyo Times

Africa is blighted by food insecurity, including the Sahel region, East Africa, and other parts of this continent. Hence, with G7 nations and the European Union being obsessed with the crisis in Ukraine and the Russian ethnic areas of Donbas (Donbass), many other major problems are being neglected. Therefore, reports are stating that people are now dying from starvation in South Sudan.

In April, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said over 1.3 million children are malnourished severely. Thus, the international community understood the severity of the crisis several months ago.

The BBC reports, “the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) said it had suspended rationing programmes in parts of the country due to a lack of funding… In June, the body said it needed $426m (£352m) to continue distributing food.”

Lee Jay Walker says, “However, funding isn’t materializing adequately. President Biden of America, in stark contrast, is supporting Ukraine to the tune of 50 billion dollars. Most of this concerns military arms. Other nations, including the United Kingdom, Japan, and nations within the European Union, are also providing Ukraine with vast sums. Therefore, the news of people dying of starvation in South Sudan sums up the over-emphasis on one conflict in Europe.”

South Sudan is blessed with natural resources. Yet, ethnic and political tensions hinder the people of this nation. Hence, money is squandered concerning power concentration and cronyism. Therefore, approximately 60 percent of the population faces “severe food insecurity.”

The World Food Programme Acting Country Director in South Sudan, Adeyinka Badejo-Sanogo, says, “…faced with increasing humanitarian needs and insufficient funding, we have taken the painful step to suspend food assistance to 1.7 million people.”

UN News reports, “Chronic levels of violence in parts of South Sudan continues to drive displacement and vulnerability, Ms. Badejo-Sanogo continued. In late April, additional UN peacekeepers were deployed to Leer county, after a surge in rapes, beheadings, civilians being burned alive and attacks on humanitarians.”

Crop production failure further exacerbated the crisis after some of the worst floodings in recent history hit South Sudan. Hence, the already fragile situation became even more severe.

In April, the breakdown of the crisis entailed high levels of food insecurity. Areas hit hard concern 72.4% in Jonglei, 67.6% in Unity, 62.9% in Warrap, 56.8% in Northern Bahr el Ghazal, 54.2% in Upper Nile, and 52.0% in the Lakes region – all of which face food insecurity.

The international community needs long-term projects and for international institutions to put pressure on political elites in South Sudan. However, before this, the crisis needs addressing concerning immediate economic assistance.


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