Friday, 5 August 2011

India to send food aid to famine-hit Somalia - The Times of India

Taking advantage of the bulging food stocks in its godowns, India is getting ready to send emergency food aid to famine-hit Somalia. An announcement is expected to be made over the next few days.

The government is working on a plan to give grain to the World Food Programme (( WFP)) for distribution in Somalia, where three new regions have just been declared famine-hit by the UN. Out of a population of roughly 7.5 million, the UN says 3.2 million Somalis are in need of immediate lifesaving assistance. An estimate said about 29,000 children under the age of 5 had died in Somalia.

In the last year, India has advanced food-aid to North Korea as well as offered rice to Bangladesh, during their famine.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (( ICRC)) is appealing for $86 million to help a further 1.1 million people in famine-affected parts of Somalia. Close to 12 million people are famine-struck in five countries of eastern Africa -- Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Uganda and Eritrea.

Unfortunately, the al-Qaida-affiliate Al Shabaab terror group in Somalia who operate the piracy missions have launched a Ramadan offensive from this week, making it more difficult to reach relief to victims. According to some reports, they have denied that there is a famine and are reportedly preventing people from reaching aid centres.

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