Conflicts & War

UN raises alarm over Somali children at risk of malnutrition

Geneva, Sep 13 (EFE).- Some 513,550 children are at risk of acute malnutrition as central and southern Somalia are facing imminent devastating famine, Untied Nations children’s fund (UNICEF) spokesperson James Elder said Tuesday.

UNICEF said a week ago that at least 730 children have died from hunger in the East African nation so far this year, a figure that is expected to rise exponentially in the coming months.

The 2011 famine in Somalia has left 260,000 people, many of them children, dead and 340,000 minors malnourished, Elder recalled.

In a press conference in Geneva, Elder warned children are dying, and many care centers are full, which means there are critically ill minors who have to receive treatment.

Children showing symptoms of malnutrition are at 11 times higher risk of dying from diarrhea or measles, diseases that have already had outbreaks in the country this year.

Suspected cases of cholera and acute diarrhea among children in Somalia rose to 8,400 between January and July, while those of measles reached 13,000.

Somalia is currently experiencing its third and worst drought in the last decade, according to the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

The lack of rainfall, decades of conflict, massive displacements and the Ukrainian war-induced sharp rise in food prices have taken the crisis in Somalia to extreme levels. EFE


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