Drought / East Africa / Food Security / Pastoralism / Somalia / Vulnerability

Famine spreads into Somalia’s Bay Region–750,000 people now face starvation over next 4 months

Famine in Somalia

A woman holds her severely malnourished young child in a camp for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Mogadishu (photo on flickr by UN/Stuart Price).

August survey results from the Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit—Somalia (FSNAU) ‘indicate that the prevalence of acute malnutrition and the rate of crude mortality have surpassed famine thresholds in Bay Region of southern Somalia.

. . . [P]oor households in this region face massive food deficits due to a combination of poor crop production and deteriorating purchasing power. As a result, the FAO managed Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit and FEWS NET [Famine Early Warning System Network] have now classified this region as IPC Phase 5—Famine.

‘Bay Region joins the Bakool agropastoral livelihood zone and the Lower Shabelle region, where famine was declared on July 20th, and the agropastoral areas of Balcad and Cadale districts of Middle Shabelle, the Afgoye corridor IDP settlement, and the Mogadishu IDP community, where famine was declared on August 3rd. An additional 50,000 people in cropping areas of Gedo and Juba and pastoral areas of Bakool face famine-level food deficits.

‘In total, 4.0 million people are in crisis in Somalia, with 750,000 people at risk of death in the coming four months in the absence of adequate response. Tens of thousands of people have already died, over half of whom are children. Assuming current levels of response continue, famine is expected to spread further over the coming four months. . . .’

Read the whole article on the website of the Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Support Unit—Somalia (FSNAU): Famine spreads into Bay Region—750,000 people face imminent starvation, 5 Sep 2011.

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