UN calls for aid in Ethiopia drought

The United Nations has described the situation in drought-ravaged Ethiopia as critical and has called for $166 million to aid 1.7 million people at the risk of starvation and disease.

    More aid is needed to prevent a disaster in Ethiopia

    Bjorn Liungqvist, the UN's acting humanitarian coordinator said the drought had mainly affected the country's livestock farmers due to a lack of rainfall.

    In a statement he said: "The situation in the pastoral areas is most critical."

    The UN says a shortage of rain in many parts of East Africa, including Kenya, Somalia and Ethiopia, has left around 6 million people on the brink of starvation.

    Disease threat

    Aid agencies say rural communities are worst hit by the drought as their survival depends on the climate, and the lack of rain across the three neighbouring nations has prevented them from using their normal coping mechanism: migration.

    Liungqvist said the nomadic communities in the region were also threatened by the onset of disease.

    "Malaria, measles and meningitis all require intense preventive interventions to control their threat," he said.

    The region also faces the threat of floods, locust invasions and other disasters, and Liungqvist urged potential donors to act fast to prevent further tragedy.

    SOURCE: Reuters


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    How different voting systems work around the world

    How different voting systems work around the world

    Nearly two billion voters in 52 countries around the world will head to the polls this year to elect their leaders.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    The great plunder: Nepal's stolen treasures

    The great plunder: Nepal's stolen treasures

    How the art world's hunger for ancient artefacts is destroying a centuries-old culture. A journey across the Himalayas.