Statement: Sudan on brink of famine

Toronto, ON, June 27, 2024 – Country Director for Plan International Sudan speaks out as millions of people are on the brink of famine and the country is on course to become the world’s worst hunger crisis.

Responding to the UN-backed IPC’s latest report* on hunger in Sudan, Mohammed Qazilbash, Country Director for Plan International Sudan said: “Today’s IPC report has confirmed what we have feared for months now – that famine is imminent in multiple areas of Sudan. Children are already dying of starvation, and we are now in a race against time to avert a full-blown famine.

This report does not come as a surprise, this disaster is man made and was preventable, aid agencies have been warning of this trajectory. Our time to act was six months ago – it is unconscionable that there are now more than 8 million people now on the brink of famine.

Conflict has displaced over 10 million people

We now have a rapidly vanishing window of time to prevent catastrophic loss of life. This conflict has displaced over 10 million people and has become a regional crisis which will only get worse as famine does not respect international borders.

Life sustaining assistance is needed not just across all of Sudan but also in the neighboring countries, where we are now seeing refugees arriving malnourished and dehydrated – fleeing hunger in addition to the fighting. All forms of humanitarian assistance need to be scaled up urgently now – including food delivery, nutrition support, cash and vouchers assistance. Most crucially, NGOs need unimpeded access to all communities, across all of Sudan so that we can reach children and their families.

The current food security crisis has coincided with the “hunger gap” in Sudan, also referred to as the lean season, which typically spans from June to September. If aid does not arrive on time, then many people, especially children, will face the risk of starvation.

Funding must be stepped up to save lives

Despite the unsurmountable odds, our staff, local NGOs, community-based organisations and aid workers across Sudan are working hard to respond, risking their own lives to save the lives of others. But it is absolutely critical that the international community steps in and increases funding for aid and prioritises dialogue to end the fighting.

In a few weeks, the rainy season will begin, and parts of Darfur will be even harder to reach when the rivers become impassable. The future of Sudan depends on the survival and proper nourishment of its infants and children, and they deserve better.”

About Plan International Canada

Plan International Canada is a member of a global organization dedicated to advancing children’s rights and equality for girls. Plan International has been building powerful partnerships for children for over 85 years and is now active in more than 80 countries.

We stand with children, especially girls, wherever they are oppressed, exploited, left behind or not equally valued. We’re determined optimists and will continue to persevere until we are all equal.

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