This is the News in Brief from the United Nations
‘Catastrophic’ hunger recorded in Haiti recorded for first time, UN warns
An unrelenting series of crises has trapped vulnerable Haitians in a cycle of growing desperation, without access to food, fuel, markets, jobs and public services, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP) warned on Friday.
For the first time ever in Haiti, around 19,000 people are living with catastrophic level 5 hunger, on the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification index, or IPC, in the capital’s Cité Soleil neighbourhood.
A record 4.7 million people are currently facing acute hunger, including 1.8 million people in Emergency phase, IPC 4.
Currently, 65 percent of Cité Soleil’s population, especially the poorest and most vulnerable, face high levels of food insecurity with 5 percent of them in urgent need of aid.
Increased violence, with armed groups vying for control of the vast and now lawless area of Port-au-Prince, has meant that residents have lost access to their work, markets and health and nutrition services. Many have been forced to flee or just hide indoors.
Guterres welcomes Lebanon-Israel deal over maritime borders
The Secretary-General António Guterres has welcomed the announcement by the Lebanese and Israeli governments of an historic settlement of their maritime border dispute.
The agreement brokered by the United States, is being seen as a major breakthrough in relations between the neighbouring countries, who have formally been at war, since the foundation of Israel in 1948.
Mr. Guterres said that he “strongly believes this encouraging development can promote increased stability in the region” and increase prosperity for Israelis and Lebanese alike.
He said the UN remains committed to assisting both countries, as requested.
Under the deal, Lebanon reportedly regains around 860 square kilometres of disputed maritime territory in the Mediterranean that is home to offshore gas fields.
Move from ‘despair to hope and action’ over food crisis: Guterres
In the face of the growing hunger crisis, the head of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization stressed the need to “harness the power of solidarity and collective action” to build a sustainable world with enough to eat for everyone.
Director-General QU Dongyu led a celebration marking Sunday’s World Food Day at FAO Headquarters in Rome, declaring that with food security worsening, the world must “leave no one behind”.
In a special message to the event, Secretary-General Guterres said it was taking place “at a challenging moment” for everyone’s food security.
“Together, we must move from despair to hope and action” he said. “On World Food Day and every day, I call on you to be part of the change”.
Matt Wells, UN News.