as she suckled her severely malnourished one-year-old son:
"I have six children", she said, "and two have died from hunger".
walked for 10 days to get to the mother-and-child clinic in
Waajid town, which is assisted by the United Nations children's
latest figures show the child malnutrition to be 25% per cent
- a symptom of the drought affecting large parts of the Horn
there have seen a steady increase in the numbers of children
needing food supplements.
to have registered 1,000 by the end of the month. There is
such a shortage of food that it is usual for the special-high
protein ration to be used by all the family.
of children discharged is very low," said Jonathan Beech of
have been coming here for six months." The farmland, 30km
(20 miles) outside Waajid, should be some of the most productive
in Somalia, but the sorghum harvest has failed for the past
five years and the dry soil is whipped into dust-clouds.
have little expectation that this season's harvest will yield
anything. There have been some scattered rains but that is
falls are needed if crops are to be grown. People in this
region used to travel across the border to Ethiopia in times
as hard as these, but with the entire region gripped by drought
that is not an option.
Food Program is pre-positioning food stocks, international
agencies are preparing for a severe emergency.