Sudan: Top U.N. Aid Official Warns of Food Crisis in 2 Southern States

8 January, 2013 (International Herald Tibune)

The director of United Nations emergency relief implored the Security Council on Tuesday to find ways to ensure his aid teams can gain access to two isolated southern states of Sudan. Hundreds of thousands of civilians are trapped there because of a conflict between rebels and the Sudanese government, which has accused the newly independent country of South Sudan of abetting an insurgency.

The relief director, John Ging, told reporters afterward that he feared that many residents in the isolated states, South Kordofan and Blue Nile, might be dying of malnutrition and disease, while others were subsisting on roots and leaves. “This is 2013, and to think that tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of people are living in such desperate and deplorable circumstances, and we can’t get in to help them as humanitarian organizations, it’s just not acceptable,” Mr. Ging said.

The United Nations and aid groups have accused Sudan of denying them access to the two states. Sudan’s United Nations ambassador, Daffa-Alla Elhag Ali Osman, told reporters that rebels were responsible for any impediments to aid.


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