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OCHA: Food gaps may occur in parts of North Darfur and Kassala

February 15 - 2018 NORTH DARFUR / KASSALA
Winter non-food items distributions in Jebel Marra (UNHCR, 2017)
Winter non-food items distributions in Jebel Marra (UNHCR, 2017)

Families in parts of North Darfur and Kassala states may face difficulties meeting food needs, between now and May 2018, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) confirmed earlier reports of food insecurity striking these areas.

According to the January 2018 Update by the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (Fews Net), North Darfur and Kassala states may begin to face levels of food insecurity which are considered 'crisis' levels, OCHA reports in its latest biweekly news bulletin.

The food gap is attributed to the poor rains, which have led to substantial crop losses in agro-pastoral areas, and poor regeneration of pasture lands, resulting in poor grazing for livestock and reducing household milk availability.

In addition, farmers in North Darfur's Kutum locality, Kassala, and Kordofan states reported last week that the lack of fuel has caused large tracts of cultivated land to dry up as irrigation pumps cannot be operated. Speaking to Radio Dabanga, vegetable and fruit farmers pointed out that especially okra, potatoes, tomatoes and onions have been damaged in recent weeks.

In other parts of the country, OCHA and Fews Net report that ongoing harvests of the 2017/18 main agricultural season are improving household’s access to food.

However, displaced people in areas controlled by the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement – North (SPLM-N) in South Kordofan, and in inaccessible areas of Jebel Marra, will continue to face a crisis level of food security during the harvest period, from October to December 2018.

Jebel Marra

OCHA also reports that the international NGO Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) has distributed winter emergency shelter and non-food items to 1,500 vulnerable families (about 7,500 people, including 4,500 women and girls) in the Golo and Nierteti areas of Jebel Marra.


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