Hunger in the news

A daily selection of news reports from the world's media dealing with hunger and responses to it.
Subscribe


Responding to Emergencies
10 January 2009

Ceasefire in shreds as war in Gaza rages on

The Gaza conflict raged on overnight after both sides dismissed a UN call for an immediate ceasefire, and Israel indicated it may move its forces deeper into densely populated urban areas. [...] Relations between the Israeli government and the UN and other international bodies continued to deteriorate with starkly contradictory accounts of two incidents involving the deaths of civilians. Food deliveries to Gaza were suspended on Thursday after the UN and the Red Cross accused the Israelis of firing on a relief convoy. And yesterday, the UN high commissioner for human rights, Navi Pillay, called for an independent investigation into reports that Israeli forces herded Palestinians into a house in Gaza and opened fire on the building the next day, killing 30. Ms Pillay said the killings "appear to have all the elements of war crimes ... It cries out for proper investigation". The Israeli military said their investigation showed both claims were false. The UN's food relief agency, the World Food Programme, said that it was becoming increasingly difficult to find food in Gaza, with many people too frightened to leave their homes, and supplies scarce and dwindling.
The Independent
Responding to Emergencies
10 January 2009

UN agencies to resume humanitarian assistance in Gaza strip

UNRWA announced on Friday that it resumes humanitarian assistance operations, which has been suspended due to the fighting. Because of the ground battles, the humanitarian assistance operation has been extremely difficult. According to WFP, there is a serious shortage of food, leaving at least 80 percent of the local residents in need of urgent food assistance. More than 3300 casualties have been reported. 10 trucks loaded with medical supplies and 11 doctors arrived in Gaza on Friday.
Nikkei-Sokuho News
Responding to Emergencies
10 January 2009

UN to resume Gaza aid delivery

The United Nations has announced that UN staff in Gaza will resume their activities leading to the delivery of more aid as soon as possible. It says it has received credible assurances from the Israelis that its staff and buildings will not be targeted as the offensive against Hamas enters its third week. Both Israel and Hamas have brushed off a UN appeal to halt devastating attacks that have claimed over 800 lives. "Eighty per cent of the population is in need right now, maybe even beyond that," Nancy Ronan, a spokeswoman for the UN's World Food Program, said. The UN halted aid shipments on Thursday after Israeli fire hit one of its convoys, killing a driver.
ABC News (Australia)
Responding to Emergencies
10 January 2009

WFP Director In Rafah, Emissary In Israel

Josette Sheeran, executive director of the UN World Food Program (WFP), visited the town of Rafah, close to the southern extreme of [the Gaza strip], to see the situation on the ground first-hand, and [assess] the needs of the Palestinian civilian population. […] Sheeran said that WFP plans to increase its direct distribution of food, to feed 360,000 people in the enclave who do not have refugee status, [up from] the 250,000 currently in care. The food, she added, is already in storage awaiting the green light.
La Repubblica
Responding to Emergencies
9 January 2009

80% Of Palestinians Dependent On WFP Aid

Fourteen days after Israel launched its offensive on Gaza, 80% of Gaza's population is in dire need of food aid, WFP said on Friday. Although WFP is able to deliver food into Gaza, distributions are severely hampered due to security concerns, WFP spokesperson Nancy Roman said.
Le Figaro
WFP Ambassadors
9 January 2009

Drew Barrymore Says She Still Believes in Love

Despite her relationship track record, Drew Barrymore still believes in love. [...] In the past several years, Barrymore has focused more on giving back to those in need. As an ambassador for the World Food Programme, she has twice traveled to Kenya to witness the poverty and malnutrition. Last year she donated $1 million to the organization and made a short film based on her travels, viewable on her official Web site
People Magazine
Responding to Emergencies
9 January 2009

House passes bill recognizing Israel's right to defend itself

The House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a resolution Friday "recognizing Israel's right to defend itself against attacks from Gaza," a measure that it said reaffirms the United States' strong support for Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. [...] The bill was [...] passed amid growing concerns over the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, where more than 1 million Palestinians are without food and clean water, according to senior U.S. officials, citing reports from the World Food Program.
CNN
Food Security Analysis
9 January 2009

Kenya: 10 Million Risk Hunger After Harvests Fail

Ten million people risk going hungry in Kenya after harvests failed because of drought, the government said Friday. The government declared a national emergency and will lift the import duty on maize until the next major harvest, which will not be for a year in many areas. The emergency declaration allows the government to divert money from development projects to food aid and to use disaster funds that are held in reserve, said government spokesman Alfred Mutua. [...] The U.N.'s World Food Program is already feeding 1.2 million people in Kenya, said spokesman Peter Smerdon. "We do expect the numbers in need to increase significantly," he said. The last state of emergency declared because of hunger was more than four years ago.
Associated Press (AP) le Nouvel Observateur The Boston Globe
Responding to Emergencies
9 January 2009

People Of Lesotho Struggle With Rising Food, Fuel Prices

Article Tools Print Discuss Urban families in Lesotho, a small landlocked southern African country, are struggling to cope with rising food prices, according to a recent survey. Practically every household interviewed in a vulnerability assessment reported being affected by escalating food costs; more than half of urban households admitted borrowing food to get by, and more than 40 percent said they had been forced to cut down on meals. [...] "Food security is a chronic problem in Lesotho, but high food prices have hit people living in the peri-urban areas particularly hard," said Bhim Udas, country representative of the World Food Programme (WFP), which was involved in the survey. "Most of the people with low incomes spend 75 to 80 percent of their money only to buy food."
IRIN Sunday Independent
Responding to Emergencies
9 January 2009

Philippines: Rebels Bomb Electricity Tower, Official Says

Separatist rebels bombed an electricity transmission tower in the southern Philippines on Saturday, according to military spokesperson Lt. Stefani Cacho. [...] Last month, armed men attacked a U.N. truck carrying food to the southern Philippines, killing the driver's assistant, according to the U.N. World Food Program.
CNN

Video

Fighting Hunger Worldwide