Urgent food aid needed in 39 countries, says FAO

ROME, Dec. 10 (MNA) – Urgent food aid is needed in 39 countries  to face the lack of food caused by internal conflicts and meteorological phenomena, informed the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

In the most recent edition of its report on "Perspectives of Harvests and Food Situation", FAO indicates that despite an improvement in world cereal production and more favorable conditions for crops, the sequels of the long-lasting drought will make hunger keep ravaging populations.
The document warns that at least in southern Africa, from January to March next year, persons in need of help for total incapacity to feed themselves will increase significantly, in particular, in Madagascar, Malawi and Mozambique.
Among the causes of local food crises, the report identifies an acute déficit in the production of food, very limited access to them due to low incomes and high prices, interruptions in distribution networks, besides social and armed conflicts.
It also says total cereal production in Africa dropped this year, despite some subregional improvements, especially in western Africa and the region of Sahel, that is about to achieve record production of cereals.
Also, corn production in southern Africa dropped suddenly, seriously threatening the conditions of food security.
Bad harvests boosted prices for corn, essential food in Malawi, where 6.5 million persons are expected to have food insecurity over the next months.
In 21 of the 39 countries urged of foreign aid to feed themselves, there exist conflicts and refugee movements that exert pressures like in Cameroon and Chad; besides other nations where conflicts are generalized, can disarticulate productive assets like the Central African Republic and South Sudan.
In Syria, where wheat production is estimated 55 percent below its level previous to the crisis, about 9.4 million persons need food aid, according to FAO.

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