News / Africa

UN: Somali Famine Refugees' Health Worsens

A  malnourished child from southern Somalia lies in Banadir hospital in Mogadishu, Somalia ( Aug. file photo)
A malnourished child from southern Somalia lies in Banadir hospital in Mogadishu, Somalia ( Aug. file photo)
TEXT SIZE - +

The U.N. refugee agency says it is extremely concerned about the increasingly poor health of recent Somali arrivals in Ethiopia.  UNHCR reports it is particularly worried about the many severely malnourished children arriving in the Dollo Ado area near the Somalia/Ethiopia border.

The U.N. refugee agency reports 19 percent of Somali refugee children arriving at the Kobe camp in the Dollo Ado area are suffering from severe acute malnutrition.

UNHCR spokesman Adrian Edwards says at three nearby refugee camps, the rates are 16 percent, 10 percent and seven percent, respectively. “In July, you may recall, we spoke about our concerns of the acute malnutrition in Dollo Ado.  Severe acute malnutrition is at a yet more serious level and poses a particular risk for children below the age of five.  UNHCR considers a rate of over one percent to be alarming,” Edwards said.  

In light of these findings, Edwards says the UNHCR and other aid agencies are planning to increase food distribution points in the camps.  He says they also will urgently open more centers for nutritional feeding and make sure that malnourished refugees receive appropriate supplementary food.

“Outreach workers are going to go from tent to tent and look for malnourished children who are not already enrolled in the feeding programs.  They will also trace children who may not be continuing with nutritional feeding treatment.  Given the severity of the situation, we expect that malnutrition rates will remain high for some weeks until the situation stabilizes,” Edwards said.  

Edwards says local Ethiopian authorities in Gode recently told the UNHCR that some people along the Somali-Ethiopian border are actually internally displaced people inside Somalia and not refugees.  The refugee-agency spokesman said the border between the two countries is hard to determine, so it is sometimes difficult to clearly establish whether someone is a refugee or simply an internally displaced person.  

“If you remember, you become a refugee once you cross an international frontier and if you have a valid claim for asylum.  We are endeavoring to help people on both sides.  UNHCR does help displaced people too.  We have a lot of assistance going to displaced people in other parts of Somalia, as you may know,” Edwards said.  

Edwards says a convoy of trucks delivered essential aid items for an estimated 18,500 newly arriving Somalis in the Gode area, 250 kilometers north of Dollo Ado, on Wednesday.  Distribution of the relief supplies - shelter material, blankets, sleeping mats and mosquito nets - is to begin shortly.

You May Like

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

Turkish Law Gives Spy Agency Controversial Powers

Parliament approves legislation to bolster powers of intelligence service, which government claims is necessary to modernize and deal with new threats Turkey faces More

Video Face of American Farmer Changing

Average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population 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.
Face of American Farmer is Changingi
X
Mike Osborne
April 18, 2014
The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
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.
AppleAndroid