Seven Million Sudanese on Brink of Famine, Warns UN

Soukaina Sghir
Soukaina Sghir
2 Min Read

The United Nations has issued a warning on the humanitarian situation in Sudan. 25 million people including 50% children need assistance.

Last week, the organization launched a €3.8 billion funding appeal to address the pressing humanitarian needs of the population for the current year. Observers express grave concerns over the looming specter of famine, aggravated by the ongoing conflict between Sudanese armed forces and paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, which has ravaged the country for the past ten months, destroying key agricultural infrastructure.

In December, clashes between the military and paramilitaries spread to the southeast of the country, leading to the collapse of the agricultural sector. States like Gezira (located 250 km south of the capital Khartoum), Sennar, and White Nile are considered the country’s breadbasket.

Local inhabitants have fled the fighting, abandoning their fields. Warehouses containing fertilizers, pesticides, and agricultural equipment have been looted, major markets in the region shuttered, and harvests of sorghum, millet, and especially wheat (of which 50% of total production hails from Gezira State) have been disrupted.

The prospect of a drastically reduced harvest is deeply troubling for UN agencies, which estimate that seven million people are now teetering on the brink of famine.

Compounding the crisis is Sudan’s heavy reliance on imports to feed its population. Before the conflict, 85% of the wheat consumed was imported, but imports have plummeted due to currency shortages. Nearly all food processing factories in Khartoum have been forced to close as a result.


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