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Nearly $68 million additional US humanitarian assistance for Sudan

April 3 - 2016 WASHINGTON, D.C.
File photo: Unamid escorts WFP lorries in North Darfur (Albert González FarranUnamid)
File photo: Unamid escorts WFP lorries in North Darfur (Albert González FarranUnamid)

The US Agency for International Development (USAID) announced it is providing nearly $68 million for emergency food assistance, to reach approximately 2.5 million Sudanese as well as refugees from South Sudan and other neighbouring states.

In a press statement on Friday, USAID says this assistance will be delivered through the World Food Program (WFP), “which will help address the complex emergency arising from conflict, natural disasters and widespread displacement in Sudan, including those severely affected by the impacts of El Niño. This contribution brings total US humanitarian assistance for Sudan to nearly $351 million since 2015.”

Malnutrition

The statement continues: Sudan has the third-highest prevalence of malnutrition in the world. The contribution will support fortified foods for malnourished children under age 5 and pregnant or lactating women, emergency school feeding programs and food distributions to the most vulnerable and food-insecure populations.

The strong El Niño effects have caused below-average plantings and harvests of staple and cash crops across Sudan, which will lead to less availability and higher demand for food in 2016. Humanitarian assistance needs will also be higher than usual as the 2016 lean season began in March, two months earlier than usual. The projected number of acutely food-insecure people in Sudan is likely to reach 4.5 million during the peak lean season in 2016.

Conflict

Protracted conflict inside Sudan and in neighbouring countries have increased the number of refugees and internally displaced people suffering from food insecurity in Sudan. Over 360,000 refugees reside in Sudan. Since December 2013, over 190,000 South Sudanese have arrived, fleeing violence in their country. Ongoing fighting in Darfur has displaced a total of 2.6 million people. Another 1.7 million are displaced by conflict in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile states.

“Since 2011, USAID has provided over $1 billion in food and nutrition assistance in Sudan,” the statement concludes.


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