Sudan’s year-long conflict spurs mass starvation threat

Apr14,2024



New Delhi: A year ago, armed fighters forced their way into Omaima Farouq's home in Khartoum, Sudan, attacking her and her children before driving them out of the house. “Since then, our lives have been ruined,” said the 45-year-old school teacher. “Everything has changed this year.” Farouk and her four children now live in a small village near Wad Madani, relying on the help of villagers and philanthropists internationally. support group Can't reach the area.
Sudan has been engulfed in war since April 2023, when tensions between the army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) erupted into street clashes in Khartoum, which quickly spread across the country. The Gaza Strip is overshadowed by the war between Israel and Hamas, which has caused massive destruction. humanitarian crisis And there is danger of famine in the area.
However, aid workers warn that Sudan is potentially heading towards an even larger-scale disaster of starvation mass death Due to the breakdown of food production and distribution networks and the inability of aid agencies to reach the most affected areas in the coming months. The conflict has led to widespread reports of atrocities, including killings, displacement, and rape, particularly in the capital region and the western region of Darfur.
The international community has paid little attention to Sudan's crisis, with the UN humanitarian operation receiving only 5% of the $2.7 billion needed to provide assistance to almost half of Sudan's population. The situation on the ground is worsening, with the army and the RSF occupying Khartoum and firing indiscriminately, while RSF forces have captured much of Darfur.
The Sudanese Unit to Combat Violence Against Women recorded at least 159 cases of rape and gang rape in the past year, mostly in Khartoum and Darfur, with many of the victims not speaking out for fear of reprisals or stigmatization. Were. The situation has been particularly dire in Darfur, where the RSF and its allies have been accused of widespread sexual violence and ethnic attacks on areas inhabited by African tribes.
The war has killed at least 14,600 people across Sudan and created the world's largest displacement crisis, with more than 8 million people driven from their homes. Food production has fallen, imports have ground to a halt and prices of staple foods have risen 45% in less than a year. The war has also devastated the country's healthcare system, leaving only 20 to 30% of health facilities functional.
At least 37% of the population is at crisis level or above hunger, with Save the Children warning that some 230,000 children, pregnant women and newborn mothers could die from malnutrition in the coming months. Approximately 3.5 million children under the age of 5 suffer from severe malnutrition, including more than 710,000 suffering from severe malnutrition.
Aid workers stress the need for the world to act, OCHA's Brady said, “Sudan has been described as a forgotten crisis. I wonder how many people knew about it in advance That they forget about it. There are others that have more attention than Sudan, I don't like to compare the crises… they both need to be treated.”
(with agency input)



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