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Somalia:WFP airlifts first aid to Mogadishu

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Laaska News  July 28,2011

MOGADISHU, July 27 (Xinhua) — The United Nations’ food agency on Wednesday began aid airlifts to the Somali capital Mogadishu where thousands from drought-hit southern Somali sought help, a spokesman for the organization said.

The shipment, the first of its kind by the World Food Program (WFP) since it was banned by Islamist rebels in 2009, landed at Mogadishu airport.

The flight brought in 14 tons of nutritional supplement intended for under-nourished children at the camps in Mogadishu, said David Orr, East and Central Africa spokesman for the WFP.

Orr told reporters at Mogadishu airport that more aid shipment will follow in the coming days to help stave off the growing humanitarian crisis in the drought-stricken country.

Islamist rebels of Al Shabaab last week went back on their pledge made early in the month to lift two-year old ban on aid agencies, including the WFP from operating in Somalia.

The UN says almost 100, 000 people arrived in Mogadishu from drought afflicted southern Somalia in search for food, water, shelter and other supplies.

Several camps have been set up in the Somali government controlled part of Mogadishu to house the growing number of people displaced by the drought in the Islamist-run south of the country.

The UN last week declared famine in drought-affected southern Somalia, but the Islamist group of al Shabaab which runs the area denied the existence of famine in the area, saying the UN was exaggerating the situation.

The UN estimates that almost 10 million people are affected by the Horn of Africa drought, describing it as the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.


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Laaska News.