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
12 February 2009

Dubai Airshow Organisers Donate Exhibition Space To WFP

Organisers of the Dubai Airshow 2009 are enlarging the free exhibition space for the United Nation's World Food Programme (WFP). F&E Aerospace is set to increase WFP's stand space to 35sq metres from 12sq metres in 2007 to ensure a more eye-catching display at the Nov 15-19 event to be held at the Dubai Airport Expo Centre, the company said in a statement. [...] "With the support and assistance we received from the Dubai Airshow in 2007, we have been able to take our message to significantly more flight charter companies over the last two years," said Cesar Arroyo, head of WFP aviation safety unit.
Bernama
Hunger in the news
12 February 2009

Inflation Amidst Recession: Nepal’s Paradox

[...] Paradoxically, at a time when most of the countries in the world are bracing themselves to face the challenges of the crisis, Nepal is experiencing an all time high inflationary situation. This is extremely worrying. If the figures published by Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) and the survey carried out by the World Food Programme in collaboration with other institutions are to be believed, prices are not only high but rising rapidly at the rate of 14.4 per cent. According to a survey of the market, coarse rice is being sold at Rs. 40 per kg, pulses at Rs. 85 and edible oil at Rs. 150 in Kathmandu and food items are costlier in the remote districts of the country.
The Rising Nepal
Hunger in the news
12 February 2009

Kenyan farmers abandon fields as hunger bites

Sheltering under a tree from the scorching midday heat, eyes glued to the clear blue sky, Kiziba Wamwagudu hopes for rain. None has fallen in months. Crops have withered away in the dry, dusty soil, and food is scarce and costly. Like millions of others in southeast Kenya, Wamwagudu, 68, and his extended family of 18 are slowly being driven into the jaws of hunger. [...] To avoid future food shortages, the U.N. World Food Programme is encouraging the use of simple irrigation and using crops that can survive with less rain. "Millet and sorghum are drought-resistant crops, and this is one of the ways people can change their farming culture to fight drought," explains Gabrielle Menezes, a spokesperson for the food aid agency. While the government puts the number of those without enough food at 10 million, WFP estimates 3.2 million are in urgent need of aid. It is feeding 1.2 million people and hopes to extend assistance to a further 2 million, according to Menezes. The U.N. agency will soon start assessing the hunger situation jointly with the government.
Reuters
Hunger in the news
12 February 2009

NKorea tightens its economic grip, restricts market trading

North Korea has clamped down on fast-growing free markets for fear they could undermine the communist state's power over its people, analysts and observers say. The regime in late November banned general markets which sell consumer goods from early next year. It severely restricted the operations of food stalls, according to the Daily NK web newspaper and other analysts. [...] Staples such as rice and corn will be sold only at state distribution centres. [...] Kim Yong-Hyun, a North Korea studies professor at Dongguk University, said the state is trying to reassert control over distribution because sharp price rises have put basic commodities beyond the reach of ordinary people. [...] North Korea may have to ease the clampdown because it cannot solve food shortages and state stores do not have enough products to sell, he said. Chronic food shortages worsened this year, the Food and Agriculture Organisation and the World Food Programme said in a joint report last week. About 40 percent of the population -- an estimated 8.7 million people -- will urgently need food aid in coming months, they said.
Bangkok Post
Hunger in the news
12 February 2009

Photo of the Day, February 12

Children wait in line for lunch provided by the World Food Program at a primary school in Kibera, a slum in Nairobi, Kenya.
Los Angeles Times
Hunger in the news
12 February 2009

Veep launches food voucher programme

Vice-President George Kunda has launched the peri-urban food voucher programme in response to increased food insecurity which has led to heightened levels of malnutrition. Mr Kunda said the food voucher programme would also be extended to other needy areas across Zambia, adding that it would be implemented on a pilot basis in Lusaka’s eight townships among them Chipata, Chawama, Chazanga and Mandevu. [...] Mr Kunda said with the support of the United Nations System, comprising the United Nations (UN), World Food Programme (WFP) and the Alliance for Sustainable Development (ASD), the programme would benefit a lot of people in the country.
Times of Zambia
Hunger in the news
11 February 2009

Revealed: The true horror of everyday life in Zimbabwe

Starving children eat rats, families turn on each other and farmers kill their own livestock to survive. Smuggled film brings Mugabe nightmare to world's attention.
The Guardian
Hunger in the news
11 February 2009

Taking on Somalia's pirates

Somali pirates are poised for renewed attacks on shipping off the coast of Somalia, according to the Royal Navy's Cdr Gerry Northwood, the head of operations for the EU's anti-piracy taskforce, codenamed Operation Atalanta. The multinational force, commanded by a British Rear Admiral, was deployed in December with the principal aim of protecting vulnerable food ships travelling to Somalia.
BBC News
Hunger in the news
11 February 2009

Ethiopia: New camp for fleeing Somalis

A camp to accommodate thousands of Somalis fleeing violence in their country is to be set up in south-eastern Ethiopia, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) said. An estimated 10,000 asylum-seekers have arrived at the border town of Dolo Ado, in the Somali Region of Ethiopia, since the beginning of the year, according to Save the Children and UNHCR. [...] Last week, UNHCR dispatched six trucks carrying relief items, including mosquito nets, blankets, jerry cans, kitchen utensils, plastic sheets and mats from Addis Ababa to Dolo Ado. The UN World Food Programme also sent food rations, enough to last 10,000 asylum-seekers two weeks, and was airlifting high-nutrition biscuits from its emergency stock in Tanzania.
IRIN News
Hunger in the news
11 February 2009

Govt. doing everything possible to ease sufferings of IDPs – Bathuideen

The Commissioner General of Essential Services S. B. Divaratne yesterday said that though the ground situation did not permit a food convoy to reach civilians trapped by the LTTE amidst the heavy fighting, the Government is counting on the WFP to take a convoy to a safe zone in Suganthipuram area of Udayarkattu somehow this week. He said that despite the LTTE having heavily mined the area beyond Pudukudirruppu, President Mahinda Rajapaksa was extremely concerned that a WFP food convoy should be dispatched without delay.
The Island (Sri Lanka)

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