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

African States Push to Keep Boko Haram Offline

Central African telecoms ministers working with Nigeria to block all videos posted by Boko Haram in effort to blunt Nigerian militant group's propaganda More

Falling Oil Prices, Internet-Savvy Youth Pose Challenge for Gulf Monarchies

Across the Gulf, younger generations are putting a strain on traditional politics More

Philippines Call Center Workers Face Challenges

Country has world’s largest business process outsourcing, or BPO, industry, employing some one-million workers 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.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More