Oxfam says worldwide response to famine ‘dangerously insufficient’

The response of the international community to global food insecurity is “dangerously inadequate,” said the NGO Oxfam in a new report released Tuesday just days after the United Nations World Food Program was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

“The threat of ‘COVID famine’ and widespread extreme hunger is raising every alarm bell within the international community, but the sluggish funding to date has hampered efforts by humanitarian organizations to provide urgent relief to those in need,” Oxfam wrote.

“The response of the international community to global food insecurity has been dangerously inadequate,” reads the report, titled “Later it will be too late”.

The NGO complained that funding for 55 million people facing extreme hunger in seven worst-hit countries – Afghanistan, Somalia, Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Nigeria, South Sudan and Yemen – was “miserably low” .

In five of the seven countries, donors had so far given “no money at all” for food aid related to coronavirus as part of the United Nations humanitarian appeal totaling $ 10.3 billion, the report said.

“To date, donors have only pledged 28 percent of the UN COVID appeal, which started back in March of this year,” Oxfam said.

Every sector – gender-based violence, protection, health and water, sanitation and hygiene – is “chronically underfunded,” Oxfam said.

“But some of the worst-funded sectors are food security and nutrition,” he added.

Last Friday, the World Food Program awarded the Nobel Peace Prize to feed millions of people from Yemen to North Korea as the coronavirus pandemic is driving millions more to hunger.

Founded in 1961 and wholly funded by donations, the UN body helped 97 million people last year and distributed 15 billion rations to people in 88 countries.

The World Food Program receives the Nobel Peace Prize for fighting hunger

© 2020 AFP

Quote: Oxfam Says International Famine Response Is “Dangerously Inadequate” (2020, October 14), accessed October 14, 2020 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2020-10-oxfam-international-response- famine-dangerously.html

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