Urgent action is needed to stop drought in West Africa’s Sahel (Google / Global Post)

Read at : Google Alert – images of the Africa Drought

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/africa/120309/13-million-people-face-humanitarian-catastrophe-west-africa

13 million people face humanitarian ‘catastrophe’ in West Africa

Urgent action is needed to stop drought in West Africa’s Sahel region from turning into a humanitarian disaster, the charity Oxfam said Friday, as it launched a $36.6 million emergency appeal for the region.

Drought in West Africa’s Sahel region will turn into a humanitarian disaster affecting 13 million people unless urgent action is taken, the charity Oxfam said Friday, as it launched a $36.6 million emergency appeal to reach more than a million of the most vulnerable.

The NGO warns that levels of malnutrition across Chad, Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and northern Senegal are hovering between 10 percent and 15 percent, with rates in some areas exceeding 15 percent, the emergency threshold under the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification, The Guardian reports.

More than one million children in the Sahel are at risk of severe malnutrition, the charity says, while in parts of Chad villagers are digging up ant hills to collect the grain the ants have stored, according to the BBC.

The governments of Chad, Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania and Niger have all declared emergencies and asked for international assistance. Oxfam says a mix of drought, high food prices and conflict are to blame for the crisis.

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More from GlobalPost: 1 million children in Sahel could starve, says UNICEF

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About Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.
This entry was posted in Desertification, drought, food / food security, hunger / famine, malnutrition, OXFAM, UNICEF. Bookmark the permalink.