Cyprus Mail
AfricaEuropeRussiaUkraineWorld

Ukraine war diverts attention from hunger, pope says in Somalia appeal

pope francis visits malta
Pope Francis

Pope Francis said on Sunday that the war in Ukraine had distracted attention from the problem of world hunger and called for urgent food aid to stave off looming famine in Somalia.

“The people of this region, who already live in very precarious conditions, are now in mortal danger because of drought,” he said at his weekly address in St. Peter’s Square, referring to the Horn of Africa.

The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said this month that it could officially declare famine in eight regions of Somalia next month if livestock continue to die, key commodity prices rise further and humanitarian assistance fails to reach the most vulnerable.

Francis told pilgrims and tourists in the square that he wanted to draw attention “to the grave humanitarian crisis that has hit Somalia and some areas of bordering countries”.

The U.N. refugee agency, UNHCR, and the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) said last week that about a million people have been internally displaced in Somalia since January.

U.N. agencies had other organisations have appealed for more funding to help stave off famine in Somalia, which is one of the countries most susceptible to climate vulnerability.

“I hope that international solidarity can respond efficiently to this emergency,” Francis said.

“Unfortunately the war (in Ukraine) has distracted attention and resources but these are the aims that call for the utmost commitment – the fight against hunger, health care, education,” he said.

Related Posts

Israel warm to draft Lebanese demarcation deal, sees gas profit-sharing

Reuters News Service

Lebanon’s Berri sees draft maritime deal as ‘positive’-report

Reuters News Service

Latvia to remain Russia’s critic as prime minister wins election

Reuters News Service

Ukraine war: Vladimir Putin’s mobilisation order was legal – but will Russians see it as legitimate?

The Conversation

Lula may clinch Brazil election on Sunday, final polls show

Reuters News Service

Gunfire, confusion grip Burkina Faso day after coup, fire breaks out at French embassy

Reuters News Service