UNITED NATIONS: Famine is knocking at the doors of 41 million people in 43 countries, including Afghanistan, according to a UN report released on Tuesday.
The report by the World Food Programme (WFP) warned that the threat of famine had increased dramatically over the past two years from 27 million in 2019 to 41 million this year.
The UN agency has sought urgent funding and humanitarian access to those in need.
The report advocated `diversification of supply corridors` in Afghanistan, `mitigating over-reliance on existing corridors with Pakistan to avoid operational delays`.
In Afghanistan, `poor rainfall has affected most parts of the country since November, threatening rainfed wheat-crop production, the report warned, It added that `water availability for spring and summer crops could also be lim-ited due to reduced snowmelt in some basins`.
`I am heartbroken at what we`re facing in 2021,` said WFP chief David Beasley while describing the situation as `just tragic` because `these are real people with real names`.
According to WFP,584,000 people are already experiencing famine-like conditions in Ethiopia, Madagascar, South Sudan and Yemen.
Nigeria and Burkina Faso are also of particular concern as they have pockets where famine-like conditions are present.
`In Somalia in 2011, 260,000 people died of hunger and by the time the famine was actually declared half of that number had already died,` Mr.
Beasley recalled. `We can`t debate the numbers to death when people need our help now.
The report blamed conflict, climate change and currency depreciation for famine-like situations in many countries.