More than 7.7 million South Sudanese, or about 63% of the population of this country where violence is intensifying, will face a situation of food crisis by July, announced on Saturday the government and the United Nations. This figure represents an increase of 7% compared to the same period – from April to July – last year, which corresponds to the dry season.
According to this joint report presented to the press on Saturday, climatic shocks (floods and droughts) and population displacements contribute to aggravate food insecurity, as well as armed clashes in the regions.
Peace to avoid famine
“We will continue to have the situation we have in South Sudan if we don’t start by (…) securing peace at the local level,” said Sara Beysolow Nyanti, in charge of UN humanitarian coordination in Sudan. of the South, evoking “sub-national violence”.
“Until the conflict is resolved we will continue to see these numbers go up because it means people don’t have safe access to their land to cultivate,” Adeyinka Badejo, director by of the World Food Program (WFP) in South Sudan.
“We call on all the leaders of the country to continue (to progress) towards peace,” she added.
Resumption of fighting
On Friday, new fighting broke out in Unity State (north) between armed forces loyal to President Salva Kiir and others loyal to his Vice-President Riek Machar.
The clashes came less than a week after the two leaders, former enemies, agreed to work to keep the peace and establish a unified command of the armed forces, one of the many unimplemented terms of the peace agreement. which they signed in 2018 to end five years of a deadly civil war.
The report presented on Saturday is based on the IPC index (Integrated Food Security Phase Classification) which includes five levels of severity of the situation – minimal, under pressure, crisis, emergency, famine.
According to him, 80% of the population in food crisis is in the states of Unity, Jonglei, Upper Nile, Warrap, and Eastern Equatoria.
In these areas, around 55,000 people were already considered to be in a disaster/famine situation over the February-March period.