Sunday, December 04, 2022

US to highlight food insecurity due to war in two UN programs

UNITED NATIONS ( Associated Press) – The United States said on Tuesday it would highlight the impact of the war in Ukraine and other conflicts on dwindling food availability and rising prices at two UN events later this month, an issue that has led to has given rise to apprehensions. Due to increasing hunger and starvation in many countries.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken will chair a ministerial meeting on worldwide food insecurity on May 18 to review current and future humanitarian needs, US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said at a news conference. He said this would include foreign ministers from many regionally diverse donor countries and countries affected by the increasing difficulty of providing adequate food to their people.

The United States takes the rotating presidency of the United Nations Security Council this month and the next day — May 19 — Blinken will chair a meeting where its 15 members will “consider the steps we need to take to ensure That is not growing food insecurity. New conflicts, instability, especially in fragile states, ”said the US envoy.

Thomas-Greenfield said Ukraine used to be a breadbasket for the developing world, but since Russia’s February 24 invasion, which has created the biggest refugee crisis in Europe since World War II, the country’s important ports have been blocked, civilian infrastructure and grain silos have been shut down. has been decimated, and “the dire conditions of hunger in Africa and the Middle East are becoming more dire.”

French President Emmanuel Macron raised the issue of global food security in a phone conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday, the Elysee Palace said in a statement.

Macron said he was ready to work with international organizations to help lift the Russian blockade on the export of food items through the Black Sea, the statement said.

Russia and Ukraine together produce 30% of the world’s supply of wheat, 20% of the corn, and export about three-quarters of the world’s sunflower seed oil.

The UN food chief said in mid-April that some 30 million metric tons of grain bound for export were unable to be shipped because of the war.

David Beasley, executive director of the United Nations World Food Program, warned the Security Council in March that the war in Ukraine had created “a catastrophe on top of a catastrophe” and that its global impact was “something we have seen since World War I”. have also seen, beyond that”. II” because many Ukrainian farmers, who produce a significant amount of the world’s wheat, are now fighting the Russians.

He added that already high food prices are skyrocketing and the war in Ukraine is turning the “world’s bread basket” for millions of its people, while disastrous countries like Egypt that usually get 85% of their grain from Ukraine and Lebanon who get 81. % in 2020

Beazley said the WFP was feeding 125 million people worldwide before the Russian invasion and had begun to cut rations due to rising food, fuel and shipping costs. WFP was buying 50% of its grain from Ukraine for people in need.

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