The Covid-19 pandemic could lead to a catastrophe on a grand scale, with millions of people around the world facing hunger, warns David Beasley, Executive Director of the World Food Program.
“All the data we have, including the UN World Food Program (WFP) forecast, suggests that the number of people suffering from malnutrition will grow 80 percent by the end of the year. All of this points to a real disaster,” David Beasley says.
“The rapid increase in the number of people unable to feed themselves will only be the immediate result of a pandemic that has disrupted the growth of food production and logistics around the world. In the coming years, longer-term damage will inevitably be done and we risk a famine of truly biblical proportions. ”
“It is obvious that social tension will grow, migration will intensify, conflicts will escalate, and hunger is likely to affect those who have not experienced it before,” echoes the words of the head of WFP TASS.
“According to WFP forecasts, the situation in Latin America will change dramatically in the first place: the number of undernourished there will increase by 269 percent. The same figure for the countries of East and Central Asia is 135 percent. In sub-Saharan Africa, the number of hungry people could almost double,” says the head of the WFP.
Beazley warned that global hunger is already high. If bold action is not taken now, “many will die, children will suffer the consequences of malnutrition for years, and the world will lose all the progress it has made in fighting hunger over the past decade,” he said.
The cost of inaction will be incredibly high. Some 138 million people in 83 countries are counting on WFP alone for food supplies this year, the official said. For many of them, the UN humanitarian body is “the last hope for survival.” In South Sudan, 1.6 million have been added to the 5 million already in need this year. In Yemen, WFP feeds 13 million people.
The situation in Lebanon has become particularly bleak since the devastating explosion two weeks ago in Beirut. The explosion not only destroyed grain stocks, but also cut supply chains as the damaged port was used to deliver about 85 percent of the food Lebanon needs.
Beazley called on international donors to provide the organization with additional funding to deal with the impending disaster. WFP will need $ 4.9 billion over the next six months to support its humanitarian programs.
Yes, this impending famine will be of biblical proportions. And this will not only affect the “poor countries”. Be ready.