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End conflict and you end hunger, UNSC told
March 23, 2018, 11:58 pm

Climate change and desertification will exacerbate the negative effects of conflict on food security for needy people [Sara Mohamed]

The United Nations Security Council is being urged to tackle the link between conflict and hunger.

At a special session of the council, the 15 members heard how hunger and famine continue despite huge technological advances because wars lead to the erosion of humanitarian laws and access of the most needy to food security.

David Beasley, the head of the UN World Food Programme (WFP), said that warring parties “won’t stop shooting at each other” which is why the Security Council – which is mandated to maintain peace and international security – should play a greater role in ending conflict.

Conflict over the past two decades has seen the number of hungry rise; in the past three years, specifically, the number of people on the brink of starvation jumped from 80 to 124 million, the UN says.

“There is no reason that there should ever be famine in the world today. There’s actually no reason that there should be hunger in the world today when we have $300 trillion available wealth,” David Beasley, the executive director of the World Food Program, told the Security Council in a briefing.

“The question we should ask ourselves today is what is driving this extreme hunger rate. And the answer … is man-made conflict.”

Mark Lowcock, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, told the Council that about two-thirds of hungry people live in areas where there is armed conflict and war.

“This Council’s main responsibility is peace and international security,” he said. “In other words, this Council can help prevent famine to ever occur again.”

Yemen is a prime example of how war has led to mass hunger.

The debilitated health sector as a result of the Pan-Arab war on Yemeni rebels has left hundreds of thousands of children at risk of starvation and death. More than 350,000 children are at risk of starvation in Yemen, with some 7 million of the population lacking basic services and health care.

The BRICS Post with inputs from Agencies

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