Since June, 11 thousand died of famine in Somalia

world | Jul 22, 2011 | By Speroforum

The humanitarian crisis in Somalia has degenerated into famine in the two regions of Lower Shabelle and Southern Bakool and could still get worse. Pouring rain is hitting the capital Mogadishu, making the lives of thousands of people displaced even more miserable due to the drought and lack of adequate shelter. Among these, approximately 10 000 families from the regions of Bay, Bakool, Lower Shabelle, Lower Juba and Upper Juba, are without shelter, food, water, proper sanitation and bathing.

They live in 50 camps set up in the capital where people continue to arrive every day. Throughout the country, about half of the population, 3.7 million people, are in crisis, 2.8 million of them live in the south. "The government is doing its best, but the problem exceeds all expectations", said the Minister of local health of Somalia's Transitional Federal Government (TFG). In recent months, according to TFG, thousands of people have died, mostly children, in the south of the country due to causes related to malnutrition.

The ongoing drought and conflict have increased the rate of malnutrition recorded in Somalia which is currently the highest in the world, with peaks of 50% in some areas of southern Somalia. Most displaced people have arrived in Mogadishu from four of the eight central and southern regions: Bay, Bakool, Lower Juba, Upper and Lower Shabelle.

The most seriously affected areas of these regions are the districts and villages of Qansadheere, Xabaal Barbar, Ufurow, Afgoye Yare, Roobay, Diinsoor, Saakow, Gurabay, Juweri, Il-Baatar Gaduuday, Deemay and Ceel-wareegow. Some reach the capital after weeks of walking, others pay 500,000 Somali shillings to get to a destination, after having lost all their livestock during the two consecutive years of drought.

According to the Ministry of the Family of TFG, about one million people are starving in the regions of Bay, Bakool, Lower Shabelle and Gedo. Every camp in Xamar-Weyne and Kanisada , in the city, is home to at least 300 families.

According to the Integrated Phase Classification, the status of famine is declared when at least 20% of households are in no position to feed themselves adequately, the prevalence of global acute malnutrition exceeds 30% and the mortality rate exceeds two deaths a day every 10 thousand people. In the last 45 days there have been about 11,000 victims, of which 9,000 in the regions of Bay, Bakool and Lower Shabelle, the rest in other regions of southern and central Somalia. 

Source: FIDES



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