United Nations: People in Gaza, Some 20 World’s Regions at Risk of Starvation

FAO Director-General Qu Dongyu: “The situation is very serious”

Qu Dongyu

World hunger is a global problem affecting millions and millions of people in different countries and continents. According to a new report titled “Hunger Hotspots,” just released by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in collaboration with the UN World Food Program (WFP), “food hunger is looming in Gaza, although the risk of starvation remains in Sudan, Haiti, Mali, South Sudan, and several other countries around the world.”

Acute food shortages will actually increase in scale and severity in 18 regions of the world, which include a total of 17 countries and a regional group of four countries (drought-affected Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, and Zimbabwe) where hunger is acute with a high risk of worsening between June and October 2024. Gaza is among the hotspots with the highest risk of deterioration.

According to FAO experts, following the Israeli army’s ground operation in Gaza, “more than one million people, half the population of Gaza, will face death and the highest level of hunger on the risk scale by mid-July.” That is, the ongoing conflict in Palestine “will further exacerbate the already catastrophic level of acute hunger, combined with unprecedented civilian deaths, widespread destruction, and displacement of almost the entire population of Gaza,” the UN report wrote.

Meanwhile, in South Sudan, the number of people at risk of starvation “will double by the end of July 2024 compared to the same period last year.” UN experts have blamed “the climate crisis,” as well as the economic turmoil taking place around the world. “La Niña (the opposite phase of El Niño) meteorological phenomenon conditions,” the United Nations report said, “are expected to prevail between August 2024 and February 2025, significantly affecting precipitation distribution and temperature.”

And FAO Director-General Qu Dongyu appealed to world leaders to “take immediate collective action to prevent hunger.” According to FAO, about 900 million people in the world are currently suffering from hunger.