News / Africa

Oxfam Warns of Impending Food Crisis in Sudan

Thousands of displaced persons from Abyei collect food rations in a makeshift camp in Turalei, southern Sudan. (File Photo - May 27, 2011)
Thousands of displaced persons from Abyei collect food rations in a makeshift camp in Turalei, southern Sudan. (File Photo - May 27, 2011)
Gabe Joselow

The international aid organization Oxfam says conflicts along the border between Sudan and South Sudan are putting civilians at risk of a major food crisis. The group warns a food shortage could add to the recent surge of refugees fleeing south. 

Oxfam says insecurity along the border between the two Sudans has restricted agriculture and inhibited aid work, putting pressure on food resources in the area.

The group is particularly concerned about conditions in Sudan's Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan states, where the northern government's armed forces have been battling rebel groups allied with the south.

“There are estimates that the people in parts of those states will be reaching an emergency level, which is phase four, which is one below famine," said Joanna Trevor, Oxfam humanitarian policy advisor. "This is because of not being able to get to the areas to plant and now to not harvest following the rainy season due to the conflict and insecurity.”

The famine early warning network FEWS NET predicts a near-famine food emergency could take hold in Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan by March, if humanitarian access does not improve.

Sudan has prohibited foreign aid groups from operating in the two states. U.N. humanitarian chief Valerie Amos, following a recent meeting in Khartoum, said she urged the government to lift the ban.

The fighting has also spurred a surge of refugees who are fleeing across the border for camps in South Sudan. Oxfam says 55,000 have arrived in recent months and the numbers continue to grow.

Trevor says at the moment, aid agencies are able to deliver services within the camps, but that continued violence poses a constant threat to those efforts.

“I think that security is going to be one of the big concerns going forward, which is why at Oxfam we have been asking or calling for the international community alongside the African Union to really push for a cessation of hostilities and ensure that the fighting stops and that people can receive aid,” said Trevor.

In November, Sudanese forces bombed a refugee camp in the south, forcing some aid agencies to pull out.

Tensions have remained high between the two Sudans since South Sudan declared independence in July. But the fighting has not only been between north and south.

In the past few weeks, tens of thousands of people have been displaced internally in South Sudan by inter-tribal fighting in Jonglei State.  Workers from the medical group Doctors Without Borders were driven from their posts in the most recent clashes.

The South Sudanese government declared a humanitarian emergency in Jonglei and has asked aid agencies to provide relief.

You May Like

Video Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said To Be Improving

Experimental drugs have been tried on six people: three Westerners and now, three African pyhysicians More

Video In Ukraine, Fear and Distrust Remain Where Fighting has Stopped

As Ukrainian military reclaims control of eastern cities residents rebuild their lives, but many say everyone is being treated with suspicion More

Video In Rural Kenya, Pressure Builds Against Female Circumcision

Girls learn to object; FGM practitioners face penalties from jail sentences to stiff fines 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.
Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improvingi
X
Carol Pearson
August 19, 2014 11:43 PM
The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improving

The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video In Ukraine, Fear and Distrust Remain Where Fighting has Stopped

As the Ukrainian military reclaims control of eastern cities from pro-Russian separatists, residents are getting a chance to rebuild their lives. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the town of Kramatorsk in Donetsk province, where a sense of fear is still in the air, and distrust of the government in Kyiv still runs deep.
Video

Video China Targets Overseas Assets of Corrupt Officials

As China presses forward with its anti-graft effort, authorities are targeting corrupt officials who have sent family members and assets overseas. The efforts have stirred up a debate at home on exactly how many officials take that route and how likely it is they will be caught. Rebecca Valli has this report.
Video

Video Leading The Fight Against Islamic State, Kurds Question Iraqi Future

Western countries including the United States have begun arming the Kurdish Peshmerga forces in northern Iraq to aid their battle against extremist Sunni militants from the Islamic State. But there are concerns that a heavily-armed Kurdistan Regional Government, or KRG, might seek to declare independence and cause the break-up of the Iraqi state. As Henry Ridgwell reports from London, the KRG says it will only seek greater autonomy from Baghdad.
Video

Video In Rural Kenya, Pressure Builds Against Female Circumcision

In some Kenyan communities, female genital mutilation remains a rite of passage. But activists are pushing back, with education for girls and with threats of punishment those who perform the circumcision. Mohammed Yusuf looks at the practice in the rural eastern community of Tharaka-Nithi.
Video

Video For Obama, Racial Violence is Personal Issue

The racial violence in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson is presenting U.S. President Barack Obama with an issue to which he has a deep personal connection. To many Americans, Obama's election as America's first black president marked a turning point in race relations in the United States, and Obama has made ending the violence a policy priority. On Monday he issued a new call for calm and understanding. Luis Ramirez reports from the White House.
Video

Video Clinton-Obama Relationship Could Impact 2016 Election

President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have a long and complicated relationship. That relationship took another turn recently when Clinton criticized the president’s foreign policy. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports there is renewed attention on the Clinton-Obama relationship as Hillary Clinton considers running for
Video

Video Iran Looks to Maintain Influence in Baghdad With New Shia PM

Washington and Tehran share the goal of stopping Syrian-based militants in Iraq. But experts say it's Iran, not the United States, that will most influence how the new government in Baghdad approaches internal reforms and the war in Syria. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns has the story.

AppleAndroid