UN says acute food insecurity to deteriorate in several countries, including Afghanistan and Yemen within months

Severe food shortage is likely to grow in 18 "hunger hotspots" in 22 countries further in 2023, according to a report by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Food Programme published on Monday.

“The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP) warn that acute food insecurity is likely to deteriorate further in 18 hunger hotspots – comprising a total 22 countries – during the outlook period from June to November 2023,” the report said.

Sudan, Burkina Faso, Mali and Haiti have been added to the list of the highest-concern-level countries to Afghanistan, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen remaining on the list, according to the report.

“The report spotlights the risk of a spill-over of the Sudan crisis – raising the risk of negative impacts in the neighbouring countries, shows that deepening economic shocks continue to drive low- and middle-income nations deeper into crisis, and warns that a likely El Nino climatic phenomenon is raising fears of climate extremes in vulnerable countries around the globe,” FAO added.

Over one million people are expected to leave Sudan, and another 2.5 million within the country will face acute food shortage in the coming months.

The report also urges immediate humanitarian actions to save lives and prevent deaths from starvation in the hotspots.

In early May, the Global Report on Food Crises for 2023 by Food Security Information Network and Global Network Against Food Crises, an alliance of humanitarian organizations founded by the United Nations and the European Union, said that around 258 million people in 58 countries experienced acute food insecurity in 2022 due to conflicts, climate change and consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, compared to 193 million a year earlier.

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