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Men take care of their camels in Somalia. ©FAO/Arete/Ismail Taxta

Somalia: New data show how drought in the Horn of Africa is driving up acute hunger


Aid to keep rural, agriculture-dependent families on their feet is needed at massive scale to stave off catastrophe.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) today warned that dire new hunger data out of Somalia sheds additional light on extended drought’s crippling impacts on the Horn of Africa region and underscores the criticality of large-scale agricultural aid to keep rural families self-reliant, fed, and in their home areas. 

The latest Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) assessment in Somalia now indicates that the number of people experiencing crisis, emergency, or catastrophe levels of hunger is poised to surpass 6 million people between now and June – representing a staggering 38 percent of the country’s population. Additionally, the analysis suggests that as many as 81 000 people in specific hunger hot spots are likely to experience death and starvation. 

“These highly alarming figures are the strongest indicator to date of a worsening situation. Across the Horn, millions of people are at risk of falling into ever-more severe levels  of hunger due to the cascading effects that drought is having on people’s livelihoods, household productive assets, and local food production,” said Rein Paulsen, FAO Director of Emergencies. 

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