Sudan partners FAO in a fight to end Locust threat

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FAO AND SUDAN WORK TOGETHER TO FACE THE DESERT LOCUST THREAT

ROME, Italy, March 19, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ ? Joint press release from the Ministry of Agriculture & Irrigation and FAO

A high-level meeting has taken place between the Government of Sudan and the UN?s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to strengthen ongoing collaboration against the current threat of Desert Locusts.

The Federal Minister for Agriculture and Irrigation H.E. Abdul-Halim Ismail Al-Mutaa?fi, the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation Mr. Mohammed Hassan Jubara and the Director-General of the Ministry?s Plant Protection Directorate Mr. Khidir Gibril Musa have met with FAO?s Representative in Sudan a.i. Mr Charles Agobia and two FAO Headquarters specialists Senior Locust Forecasting Officer Mr. Keith Cressman and Senior Coordinator of FAO?s Food Chain Crisis Ms. Mona Chaya.

The partners discussed the seriousness of the expected locust developments in the coming months and the need to plan an effective control campaign during the spring.

This comes after the PPD?s Locust Control Section carried out extensive and successfulcontrol operations on the first swarms of locusts. Around 180,000 hectares were treatedand six sprayer aircraft were deployed.

A joint FAO-PPD mission has just returned from areas along the Nile in Northern and River Nile states between Dongola and Atbara to assess the current threat.

In a 1,000 km stretch of the Nile from Wadi Halfa to Ed Damer the locusts have laid eggs which are expected to complete hatching in the coming days. The resulting hoppers (wingless nymphs) will form small bands during April and new groups and swarms could form in May.

FAO and the Government of Sudan are currently working in close partnership to contain this threat. The PPD is actively monitoring the situation in both states by carrying out ground surveys and is preparing to implement spray control measures.

FAO and the Government of Sudan are committed to working together to control Desert Locust threats. During outbreaks, national survey and control operations combined with FAO?s early warning system are the basis of a preventive control strategy to reduce the frequency and duration of plagues. FAO?s Desert Locust Information Service (DLIS) at FAO Headquarters monitors the global situation on a daily basis and provides forecasts and early warning to affected countries. FAO also assists the country in obtaining external assistance. Sudan is a member of the FAO Commission for Controlling the Desert Locust in the Central Region (CRC) which supports the strengthening of national capacities in countries within the region.

The latest forecasting information is available at FAO?s Locust Watch website: http://www.fao.org/ag/locusts/en/info/info/index.html

SOURCE 

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)

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