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Hunger in Africa surges due to conflict, climate and food prices

Hunger in Africa surges due to conflict, climate and food prices

AYENAT MERSIE CONFLICT, climate change and rising food and fuel prices are pushing about a quarter of Africans towards hunger, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said. About 346 million people in Africa are facing severe food insecurity, meaning they have likely experienced hunger, in the worst crisis since 2017. Last year, the figure was about 286 million. "The acute food insecurity situation in many of the countries where we are working - and people are already affected by armed conflict - is tipping into famine-like conditions," said Dominik Stillhart, ICRC's global operations director. Two years of conflict…
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Are high food prices here to stay?

Are high food prices here to stay?

LAURIE GOERING FOOD prices around the world have soared to record levels this year as the Russia-Ukraine war slashes key exports of wheat and fertiliser from those countries, at the same time as droughts, floods and heat fuelled by climate change claim more harvests. Wheat prices hit a 14-year peak in March, and maize prices reached the highest ever recorded, the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems (IPES) said in a report released on Friday. That has made basic staples more expensive - or harder to find - for families in many countries, especially the poorest. Climate change, widespread poverty and conflicts…
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What next for Ethiopia and its neighbours: Somalia and Eritrea

What next for Ethiopia and its neighbours: Somalia and Eritrea

FROM a historical standpoint, the current conflict in Ethiopia fits within an established political pattern. There have been power struggles between the centre and the border regions since the modern Ethiopian state was established in the late 19th century. NAMHLA MATSHANDA, Senior Lecturer, Political Studies, University of the Western Cape The Ethiopian state was built on the back of conquest. Regions that existed on the margins were incorporated into the Ethiopian imperial state. These regions were occupied by groups with vastly different cultures from those of the centre. For example the capture of the Harar city state in 1887 paved…
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Ten humanitarian crises and trends to watch in 2021

Ten humanitarian crises and trends to watch in 2021

Fraying deals: Who will keep peace on track? MONOTORING and oversight is important for peacebuilding to succeed, but there may be less money and international bandwidth available as a result of COVID-19 and the global recession. Peace agreements from South Sudan to Colombia to Central African Republic are already faltering; political transitions in Sudan, Mali, and potentially Afghanistan look equally wobbly. While each situation is unique, they all share the need for guarantors to keep what peace there is on track. The African Union is one – but it is cash-strapped and will have its work cut out to deliver on all its…
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In escalating conflict, people of Ethiopia’s Tigray risk displacement, U.N. says

In escalating conflict, people of Ethiopia’s Tigray risk displacement, U.N. says

GIULIA PARAVICINI NINE million people risk displacement from an escalating conflict in Ethiopia's Tigray region, the United Nations said, warning that the government's declaration of a state of emergency was blocking food and other aid. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is pressing ahead with a military campaign he announced on Wednesday, despite international pleas to pursue dialogue with the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) rather than risk civil war. Tigrayans dominated Ethiopian politics for decades until Abiy took office in 2018 and are fighting his efforts to remove their grip on power. Clashes between federal troops and Tigrayan forces had broken…
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