News / Africa

More Aid Coming to African Drought Victims

A Turkish doctor examines a Somali woman from southern Somalia in Mogadishu, Somalia, September14, 2011.
A Turkish doctor examines a Somali woman from southern Somalia in Mogadishu, Somalia, September14, 2011.

Multimedia

Audio
TEXT SIZE - +

The international community came together Saturday at the United Nations to find ways to mitigate the current crisis in the Horn of Africa, but also to prevent future ones from happening. At the meeting, the World Bank chief announced nearly $2 billion in new funding for drought and famine related efforts in the region.

The United Nations has been warning about the growing crisis in the Horn of Africa for months. In Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Djibouti there are more than 13 million people in dire need of assistance after a devastating drought triggered a famine.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the gathering that the epicenter of the crisis is in Somalia, where 750,000 people are at risk of imminent starvation and four million people need urgent humanitarian assistance.

He blamed Islamic extremists who are battling the Somali government for exacerbating the crisis.

"We have made progress in helping those most in need in Somalia. But it is still not enough," said Ban.  "We could save many more lives if we were given free access to areas under the control of Al-Shabab. It is no coincidence that these are the districts where the crisis is most acute. Somalia will never be free of the threat of famine until it has peace and stability."

Additional aid

World Bank President Robert Zoellick addressed the summit via a video link. He announced the institution would increase its support to drought affected Horn of Africa countries from $500 million to nearly $2 billion to address short-term needs and fund long-term recovery.

"I am pleased to announce $1.88 billion in this program," said Zoellick. "It will cover three overlapping challenges: first rapid response to strengthen safety nets; second, to support the economic recovery through restoring livelihoods and jobs; and third, drought resilience to help farmers prepare for what is to come."

Climate change

Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga was among the African leaders attending Saturday's mini-summit who warned of the impact of climate change on the continent.

"The current drought and famine is partly the consequence of unmitigated impacts of climate change in our midst," said Odinga.  "Adaption to climate change, therefore, needs to be a central theme in all future strategies and actions."

Ethiopia's Deputy Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn echoed that, saying food insecurity in the region is shifting from settled farm communities to pastoral areas because of the effects of global warming.

"The impact of climate change on pastoral areas is more pronounced, as can be seen from the exceptionally harsh drought this year," said Desalegn.  "It is clear now that pastoralism as way of life is fast becoming unviable and addressing the root cause of the problem must start from such a realization."

Regional countries also expressed concern about the numbers of refugees and internally displaced persons from the crisis; the high number of fatalities; and the fear that the coming rainy season could compound problems with flooding and water-borne diseases.

You May Like

Abuja Blast Impacts Lives, Livelihoods

Officials say they are looking at ways to help bombing victims and boosting security More

Cambodia Technology Adviser Criticizes Cybercrime Draft Law

Phu Leewood says current criminal code can be used to prosecute offenders and that there is no need for a separate law More

Photogallery A Year Later, Boston Remembers Deadly Marathon Bombings

City pauses to honor victims and salute emergency workers who came to their assistance in frantic moments after blasts More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid