UN World Food Programme warns, The Climate change and war pushing 285 million to starvation.


Climate change and war is fuelling a monumental food crisis around the globe that is pushing 285 million people towards starvation, the UN World Food Programme’s director has said.

David Beasley said if governments and companies don’t step up to the plate, there would be “political repercussions” across the world as people are forced to emigrate en masse from their homelands simply because food aid is not being delivered in their time of need.

Speaking at a food security discussion at the Munich Security Conference, Mr Beasley also said 23 million people in Afghanistan alone are in danger of dying of starvation, but said the UN World Food Programme is questioning where it can obtain the funds needed to feed them.READ MOREUK to co-host Afghanistan crisis summit as Taliban mark six months in power

Around the globe, the number of people at serious risk of dying from starvation has spiked from the pre- Covid-19 pandemic figure of 135 million, he said.

He added that “285 million people are marching towards starvation” and urgent action is needed.

“Out of that, there are 45 million knocking on famine’s door in 43 countries.

“These are people who don’t know where their next meal is coming from.”

And conflict and climate change are the two most prominent causes of the crisis.

“We have been telling world leaders for the past four years that the hill is deteriorating, and there’s going to be political repercussions,” he said.

Before the Taliban retook control of the country last August, 80 per cent of Afghanistan’s budget came from external aid.

The majority of this assistance was suspended after the militants returned to power and financial assets of about $10 billion were frozen by foreign governments and institutions.

A severely malnourished 3-year-old Yemeni child is pictured at the Al Khudash camp for displaced people in the Abs district in Yemen. AFP
A severely malnourished 3-year-old Yemeni child is pictured at the Al Khudash camp for displaced people in the Abs district in Yemen. AFP

Mr Beasley the aid needed for Afghans alone amounted to about $220 million per month.

“Where am I going to get that money from? Have I got to take it from [food programmes helping] children in Ethiopia, from Yemen, from the Sahel?”

Turning to the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, where the Iran-backed Houthi rebels are engaged in a protracted conflict with government troops, Mr Beasley had an equally dismal outlook for the future.

“I don’t know how you will not have a living hell on earth in Yemen in the next few months,” he said. “It is truly catastrophic and a very complex environment to work in.”

Cindy McCain, US ambassador to the UN agencies in Rome and widow of the late US senator John McCain, said the world is suffering from a “lack of nimble ability to solve these problems”.

She urged the private sector to step up and commit more funds to helping feed the world’s populations at risk of starvation.

“As David said, it is time, we can no longer rely on any government to fund these programmes. This is not just about governments, this is about people to people. I mean, this is survival.”

She suggested tax breaks could be offered to companies as an incentive to encourage them to give more to food programmes.

“It’s time to for us to go and say to people, and companies and corporations and foundations, etc, ‘We need you, not only do we need you, we demand you because this issue is too large.’”

She stressed that the UN Food Programme could not meet the global challenge alone.

“We need so from every walk of life we need involved, like I said, you know, our science and technology, folks, step up, come on.

“I know there’s people smarter than us out there to figure this out in terms of you know, science, technology.”

Share post:




More like this

UAE’s visiting visa regulations: Recent changes and essential items required for travelers

New Guidelines for UAE Visit Visa Holders: Essential Documents...

Visa Run Dubai Explained

Extend Your Dubai Dream: A Comprehensive Guide to Visa...

Check out the Dubai Job search package for 2024

One of India's largest travel and tour operators to...

Airlines operating in Israel despite the war in Gaza

The number of airlines flying into the country has...