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UN boosts humanitarian appeal to help tackle Zimbabwe worst-ever hunger crisis

08.08.2019 16:32 "Agro Perspectiva" (Kyiv) With Zimbabwe now experiencing its «worst-ever hunger crisis», WFP (UN World Food Programme) has revised its humanitarian appeal to step up food assistance to people most affected by drought, flooding, and economic stagnation, UN Radio says referring to WFP Spokesperson Herve Verhoosel this week Wed Geneva report. «Yesterday the humanitarian community launched an urgent appeal for funds to respond to the country’s very difficult humanitarian situation. WFP is set to increase aid, especially for drought-affected residents, but also to build community capacity to respond to climate shocks,» he said. It is to be admitted, Zimbabwe was once known as leading food producer within the region, one of the bread baskets of Africa, but its problems were exacerbated earlier this year when Cyclone Idai struck, affecting around 570,000 Zimbabweans, together with large parts of Mozambique and Malawi. It is to be noted, the revised humanitarian appeal covers Jan 2019 — Apr 2020, with a total requirement of US$331.5 million needed from this point onwards. As to Verhoosel, over one-third of the rural population, or some 3.6 million people, will be food insecure by this year Oct, and by next year Jan the figure is expected to boost to 5.5 million within the inter-harvest season. Moreover, most of Zimbabwe 60 districts will exhaust their maize stocks by this year Oct. «This accounts for 60% of the rural population», explained Mr. Verhoosel, adding that the UN agency is providing food assistance to 700,000 people within this year Aug. Verhoosel called on the international community to «respond favorably to this request for funds to respond to this urgent situation».

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