Ethiopia drought 'as bad for children as Syria's war'

International charity says 400,000 children suffering from severe acute malnutrition and 10 million more need food aid.

by

    The United Nations says the worst drought in 30 years in Ethiopia means 400,000 children are suffering from severe acute malnutrition and more than 10 million people need food aid.

    It has appealed for a $50m cash injection to help the country to deal with its worst drought in decades.

    Save the Children, the international non-governmental organisation, says that the drought in Ethiopia represents as big a potential threat to children's lives as the war in Syria.

    "We only have two emergencies in the world that we have categorised as category one. Syria is one and Ethiopia is the second. And so we've said we need to raise $100m for this response," said Carolyn Miles, chief executive of Save the Children, US.

    Al Jazeera's Charles Stratford, reporting from Afar region in eastern Ethiopia, says the government and international donors have already put in hundreds of millions of dollars to try to help, but aid agencies say it just is not enough.

    Mohammed Dubahala, a father of ten, used to have 53 cows; he has only five now.

    He received two government food handouts over recent months but says it is not enough because of the scale of the drought.

    "I am afraid for the people now and I am afraid for the children because there is no rain, and if there is no rain, people die. There is no food, there is no milk," Dubahala said.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


    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.