UN appeals for funding to help 5.9 million in need of food aid in Somalia

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United Nations

The United Nations’ top relief official in Somalia has appealed for funding to help millions of people in need of life-saving assistance in the country.

Adam Abdelmoula, humanitarian coordinator for Somalia said the funding crisis has left 5.9 million vulnerable persons at risk of losing access to some or all of the life-saving and protection services they desperately need in the country.

“Humanitarian partners can barely meet the basic needs of hungry families, desperate communities and displaced women and children,” Abdelmoula said in a statement issued in Mogadishu on Monday evening.

The UN official said the alarming low funding is jeopardizing life-saving assistance to millions in Somalia and warned that if action is not taken to address this funding gap, the cost could be catastrophic. He said humanitarian needs have increased significantly in 2021 but the funding to respond to these needs is the worst in six years.

According to the UN, some 2.9 million people remain displaced from their homes; 2.8 million will need urgent food assistance by September; a million children are malnourished.

The UN, which said almost half the Somali population needs humanitarian aid, revealed that the situation has been aggravated by a double climate disaster – drought in some parts of the country and flooding in others – and the impact of political tensions, COVID-19 and the worst desert locust infestation in years.

“We rely on the generosity of our donors to ensure the needs of the most vulnerable Somalis are addressed. I implore donors to stand with families in Somalia and avert a disaster by fully funding the humanitarian response,” Abdelmoula said.

He said despite the dire situation, only 26 percent of the 1.09 billion U.S. dollars funding needed for the 2021 Somali Humanitarian Response Plan has been provided.

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