Hunger in the news

A daily selection of news reports from the world's media dealing with hunger and responses to it.
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Hunger in the news
19 January 2009

Kenya seeks $463 mln to feed hungry citizens

The Kenyan government on Friday launched an international appeal seeking 37 billion shillings (about 463 million U.S. dollars) to feed its hungry population as it has declared the famine situation in the country as a national disaster. [...] Currently, the Kenyan government and the World Food Program are feeding 1.4 million people under [an] emergency operation program. Another 1 million people are also fed through direct government interventions. However, Kibaki said these ongoing programs cannot absorb the sharp increase in numbers of needy people requiring relief food without additional resources.
Xinhua
Hunger in the news
19 January 2009

Fighting world hunger should be Obama priority: expert

Fighting hunger is the only way to stabilise the planet, leading economist Jeffrey Sachs said Monday, urging Barack Obama to reverse many of the policies carried out by his predecessor in the White House. "The United States cannot expect to be a safe and secure country if it is spending 0.16 of a percent of its gross national product on development assistance," Sachs told reporters. Sachs -- one of the most influential economists of the past decades and a special adviser to UN chief Ban Ki-moon -- was in Kenya to visit some of his development projects and support a government plan to counter looming famine. "Most of the crises around the world... are hungry places. We say these are ideological crises, but they are hunger crises. These are drylands wars, it starts with water, it goes to food supply and it goes to violence."
Agence France Presse (AFP) IC Publications
Responding to Emergencies
19 January 2009

Flood-hit Mindanao areas to get food aid

The United Nations' humanitarian relief arm, the World Food Programme (WFP), will start distributing food aid to flood-hit people in northern Mindanao and Lanao del Sur on Tuesday, an official said. Patricia Artadi-Facultad of the WFP Philippines office said the supply of some 630 metric tons of rice for about 25,000 families displaced by flood in the region has already arrived and were being prepared for handout. She said the first batch of food aid is slated to be distributed in Cagayan de Oro; Opol, Alubijid and El Salvador towns in Misamis Oriental; and Lanao del Sur areas. [...] Earlier, Stephen Anderson, WFP's Country Director and Representative in the Philippines, has said the agency is "concerned over the growing number of persons displaced by this natural disaster, some of whom are already vulnerable due to the conflict in the area." Anderson stressed that "the restoration of livelihoods of the affected people could take time."
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Food Security Analysis
19 January 2009

Hunger stalks Misamis Oriental

Now that the rains have somehow abated, Misamis Oriental officials fear that majority of the province's one million residents will face hunger in the aftermath of the recent devastating flash floods. "Our problem now is how our people will fare in the coming months. The next planting season is still months away. How will they survive in between those months," Misamis Oriental Vice Governor Norris Babiera told officials of the World Food Programme (WFP). [...] The World Food Programme, a United Nations humanitarian agency, has pledged to send 630 tons of rice that will be distributed to the two cities of Iligan and Cagayan de Oro and the provinces of Misamis Oriental and Lanao del Norte, which were stricken by flash floods last week. WFP deputy country director Alghassim Wurie said 6,815 bags of rice will be given to 14,105 families or 64,719 persons affected by the disaster. Wurie said each of the families will receive 25 kilos of rice, but the amount is barely enough to see them through the lean months ahead.
Sun Star
Logistics
19 January 2009

NATO chief praises China's participation in anti-piracy campaign off Somalia

The NATO secretary general on Monday praised the Chinese navy's anti-piracy operations off the coast of Somalia and indicated NATO's willingness to work with China on the issue. [...] NATO deployed four warships off Somalia in October to escort World Food Program food shipments to Somalia and to patrol the seas to deter piracy. Its mission ended in December. But the alliance is considering a long-term strategy on the piracy issue and stands ready to consider further requests for the use of its naval assets in this regard.
Xinhua
Logistics
19 January 2009

UN assesses Gaza relief needs on first full day of halt to fighting

The United Nations has already started assessing the devastating damage and relief needs in the Gaza Strip on the first full day of a truce in fighting between Israel and Hamas, with the overall bill possibly reaching billions of U.S. dollars, amid a feeling of "overwhelming grief" among the 1.5 million inhabitants there, senior UN officials said on Monday. [...] The UN World Food Program (WFP) Lifeline Gaza, launched a week ago at Egypt's border with Gaza to raise awareness and resources for victims of the conflict, has already helped deliver urgently needed nutritious food in Khan (south), Der el Balah (centers) and Gaza City. Lifeline Gaza seeks 81 million U.S. dollars for food and logistics for 365,000 people in peril, said the officials.
Xinhua
Hunger in the news
19 January 2009

UN: Hundreds of millions needed for Gaza aid

Hundreds of millions of dollars in humanitarian aid will be needed immediately to help Gaza's 1.4 million people and billions of dollars will be required to rebuild its shattered buildings and infrastructure, the U.N. humanitarian chief said Monday. John Holmes said some neighborhoods have been almost totally destroyed, there are huge medical and food needs, sewage is flowing in some streets, and unexploded ordnance is posing a big problem.
Associated Press (AP) Washington Post
Food Security Analysis
18 January 2009

Wheat price remains high

Although the price of wheat has dropped almost 60 percent on the international level since early 2008, Yemeni importers and wholesalers are creating price hikes to increase their profits, say retailers. Last week, the price of wheat witnessed an unjustified increase. In two weeks, the price of a 50-kilo sack of wheat has increased from YR 4,200 to almost YR 6,000, four times its price in 2007. [...] In remote villages, the high price of food has led families to regularly skip meals and spend over two-thirds of their income on food, forcing some to pull children out of school because they cannot afford it, according to a recent assessment by the World Food Program.
The Yemen Times
Preventing Hunger
17 January 2009

North Korea Looks to Obama Administration for Food, Fuel Aid

A U.S. expert says North Korea is looking for "positive steps" from the Obama administration to improve relations between the two countries. North Korea may be signaling some of its priorities include heavy fuel oil and long-term food aid. [...] Earlier this month, the United States sent out a shipment of food to North Korea. The U.S. State Department said it would not stop food aid to the country, but also cited problems with North Korea not issuing visas for Korean-speaking U.N. World Food Program workers.
Voice of America News
17 January 2009

Rains won’t cease in flooded areas

The death toll in what meteorologists had described as an unusual weather phenomenon is rising as rains and floods continue to wreak havoc in Mindanao and parts of Visayas and Bicol. [...] The World Food Programme (WFP), responding to appeals for help from local governments, is to provide up to 630 tons of rice to help 25,000 families displaced by the Mindanao floods, the UN agency said in a statement Friday.
Philippine Daily Inquirer

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