The United Nations World Food Program (WFP) said it has encountered a funding shortfall in meeting the needs of refugees, internally displaced persons (IDPs) and communities in Ethiopia.
The WFP, in its latest Ethiopia country brief issued late Thursday, said it is facing a funding shortfall of 420 million U.S. dollars to support its humanitarian activities in Ethiopia until the end of the year.
“Reports from WFP’s conflict sensitivity assessment indicate that the food security situation is worsening in many areas of the country,” the WFP said.
It said severe acute malnutrition is on the rise in both refugee camps and IDPs communities across the East African country.
According to the WFP, Ethiopia has faced conflict, displacement and drought over the past few years, eventually resulting in growing food insecurity.
Noting that the peace agreement that ended the conflict in northern Ethiopia has improved peace in Afar and Tigray regions, the WFP said armed conflict is affecting WFP operations in nine zones across the Amhara region, which was also affected by the conflict.
The WFP’s humanitarian response plan in 2023 targets the most vulnerable, including those facing protection concerns due to violence and conflict and victims of extreme drought.
It said some 15.1 million people in Ethiopia were in need of emergency food assistance for the third quarter.
The WFP said its net funding requirement of 410 million from July to December 2023 also includes 7 million U.S. dollars to support Sudan refugee response for the next six months.
According to recent figures from the United Nations, over 81,000 people have crossed into the Ethiopian border since the onset of the Sudan crisis in April, 2023.