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‘We need to start now’ on road to peace, UN envoy says as Syria negotiations open in Geneva

INTERNATIONAL, 23 February 2017 – Welcoming the representatives of the Syrian Government and its opposition to the United Nations-facilitated negotiations that opened today in Geneva, Staffan de Mistura reiterated the need to work together for a political solution.

“We face an uphill battle. It will not be easy,” the UN Special Envoy for Syria said, “but we must apply ourselves to this task.”

“Let’s try to work together to end this horrible conflict and lay the foundation for a country at peace with itself, sovereign and unified,” he noted.

Making reference to the Palais des Nations where the intra-Syrian negotiations are being held, he said the UN headquarters in Switzerland was a symbol “unifying all of us” given its history and could be the place where “Syrians started a long, hard journey to peace.”

He stressed that after six years of conflict, people are waiting for a relief from all suffering and dream “for a new road out of this nightmare.”

Mr. de Mistura is continuing to push for a resolution to the conflict based on UN Security Council resolution 2254 (2015) that endorsed a road map for peace process in Syria, including specific language on governance, constitution, elections, and even how negotiations should be timed.

Today’s intra-Syrian negotiations follow talks in Astana, Kazakhstan, where participants agreed on how to monitor the ceasefire effort started in December 2016.

As in Astana, representatives of Russia and the United States are among the Security Council Member States present at the discussions.

Syrian women and children bearing the brunt

The Special Envoy also pledged to do everything to promote the role of Syrian women in the political efforts.

Earlier today, he was greeted by a group of Syrian women holding a vigil in Geneva for relatives and friends – sometimes children – who had been arrested, abducted or are still missing apparently as a result of the Government or the opposition.

Calling them Syrian mothers, wives and daughters, Mr. de Mistura said they were symbolic of everyone still missing “in this horrible conflict.”

He pledged to raise the issue of detainees, abducted and missing people as part of the ongoing discussions.

Meanwhile, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) today urged participants to the talks to put Syria’s children first.

In a statement UNICEF Regional Director Geert Cappelaera said at least 20 children were reportedly killed in attacks in the country since the start of this year, and many more injured.

“The numbers are a grim indication that the cessation in hostilities announced last December has yet to result in real gains in protection and humanitarian assistance for all children in Syria,” Mr. Cappelaera said.

“What if these were your children?” he asked.

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‘Turn the tide on plastic’ urges UN, as microplastics in the seas now outnumber stars in our galaxy

CARIBBEAN/INTERNATIONAL, 23 February 2017 – Launching an unprecedented global campaign, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is urging everyone to eliminate the use of microplastics and stop the excessive, wasteful use of single-use plastic, to save the world’s seas and oceans from irreversible damage before it’s too late.

“Plastic pollution is surfing onto Indonesian beaches, settling onto the ocean floor at the North Pole, and rising through the food chain onto our dinner tables,” Erik Solheim, the Executive Director of UNEP, said in a news release announcing the campaign.

“We’ve stood by too long as the problem has gotten worse. It must stop,” he added.

Through its Clean Seas campaign, the agency has urged countries and businesses to take ambitious measures to eliminate microplastics from personal-care products, ban or tax single-use plastic bags, and dramatically reduce other disposable plastic items by 2022.

Ten countries have already joined the initiative with far-reaching pledges: Indonesia has committed to slash its marine litter by 70 per cent by 2025; Uruguay will tax single-use plastic bags later this year; and Costa Rica will take measures to dramatically reduce single-use plastic through better waste management and education, according to UNEP.

These initiatives could not come sooner as up to 80 per cent of all litter in the oceans are made of plastic.

According to estimates, by 2050, 99 per cent of earth’s seabirds will have ingested plastic

An illustration of the sheer magnitude of the problem is that as much as 51 trillion microplastic particles – 500 times more than stars in our galaxy – litter the seas.

Each year, more than eight million metric tonnes of plastic end up in oceans, wreaking havoc on marine wildlife, fisheries and tourism, and cost at least $8 billion in damage to marine ecosystems. According to estimates, by 2050, oceans will have more plastic than fish if present trends are not arrested.

According to UNEP actions to stem the growing tide of maritime litter could include reducing the use of single-use plastics at the individual level such as by using reusable shopping bags and water bottles, choosing products without microbeads and plastic packaging, and not using straws to drink.

“Whether we choose to use plastic bags at the grocery store or sip through a plastic straw, our seemingly small daily decisions to use plastics are having a dramatic effect on our oceans,” said film actor and founder of the Lonely Whale Foundation, Adrian Grenier.

Similarly, on larger and commercial scale, supply chains can be modified.

One such example is the technology company DELL Computers: which has announced that it will use recovered ocean plastic in its product packaging.

“DELL is committed to putting technology and expertise to work for a plastic-free ocean,” said its Vice President for Global Operations, Piyush Bhargava. “Our new supply chain brings us one step closer to UNEP’s vision of Clean Seas by proving that recycled ocean plastic can be commercially reused.”

According to UNEP, major announcements are also expected at the upcoming conference on The Ocean at the UN Headquarters in New York (5-9 June), and UN the Environment Assembly to be held in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, in December.

“The ocean is the lifeblood of our planet, yet we are poisoning it with millions of tonnes of plastic every year,” expressed Peter Thomson, the President of the UN General Assembly, highlighting the upcoming conference and urging for ambitious pledges to reduce single-use plastic.

“Be it a tax on plastic bags or a ban on microbeads in cosmetics, each country [can] do their bit to maintain the integrity of life in the Ocean.”

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UN health agency reports depression now ‘leading cause of disability worldwide’

SINT MAARTEN/INTERNATIONAL, 23 February 2017 – Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, the United Nations health agency today reported, estimating that it affects more than 300 million people worldwide – the majority of them women, young people and the elderly.

An estimated 4.4 per cent of the global population suffers from depression, according to a report released today by the UN World Health Organization (WHO), which shows an 18 per cent increase in the number of people living with depression between 2005 and 2015.

“Depression is different from usual mood fluctuations and short-lived emotional responses to challenges in everyday life,” the WHO said.

According to the report, which was released today ahead of April’s World Health Day, prevalence rates seem to peak in adults at around 60 years of age, but are also seen in teenagers.

When long-lasting and with moderate or severe intensity, depression may become a serious health condition leading, at its worst, to suicide. According to the report, some 800,000 people kill themselves every year, a significant number of them young adults between the ages of 15 and 29.

“Depression results from a complex interaction of social, psychological and biological factors,” WHO said, adding that depression can lead to more stress and dysfunction and worsen the affected person’s life situation.

To reduce depression, the UN agency recommends effective school-based programmes and exercise regimes.

Different psychological and psychosocial treatments were also noted in the report, which notes that health-care providers may offer behavioural activation, cognitive behavioural therapy [CBT], and interpersonal psychotherapy [IPT], or antidepressant medication (such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors [SSRIs] and tricyclic antidepressants [TCAs]).

Among the findings, however, the authors caution against using antidepressants to treat children or to quickly offer them to adolescents.

Some psychological treatment formats for consideration include individual and/or group face-to-face psychological treatments delivered by professionals and supervised lay therapists.

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Security Council extends mandate of UN Guinea-Bissau peacebuilding office through 2018

INTERNATIONAL, 23 February 2017 – The United Nations Security Council today extended for another year the mandate of the UN Integrated Peace-Building Office in Guinea-Bissau, known as UNIOGBIS, and urged all political actors in the country to implement the provisions of the Conakry Agreement signed last October.

The Council endorsed the Conakry Agreement – which carries the name of the Guinean capital where it was signed in 2016 following talks between political leaders, civil society and religious leaders – saying that “it offers a historic opportunity for national authorities and political leaders, as well as civil society, to jointly ensure political stability and build sustainable peace.”

The 15-members of the Council welcomed and supported a high-level mission to the country that is expected to be dispatched by the regional bloc Economic Community of Western African States (ECOWAS) as part of a follow-up for implementation of the Agreement.

Under its renewed mandate, which will begin on 1 March 2017 and run through at least 28 February 2018, UNIOGBIS will also continue to work with ECOWAS, its mission in Guinea-Bissau (ECOMIB) and other international partners to implement national security sector reform and strengthen the rule of law.

Among its primary responsibilities, the Council mandated the Office to focus its efforts on supporting an inclusive political dialogue and national reconciliation, and providing technical assistance to national authorities.

UNIOGBIS will also focus on supporting the Government of Guinea-Bissau in “mobilization, harmonization and coordination of international assistance,” with UN partners, the African Union (AU), the Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLC), ECOWAS, the European Union (EU).

In 2014, the West African nation concluded a second round of presidential elections, which are widely seen as essential to restoring constitutional order, economic growth and development following a 2012 military coup.

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Yemen's health system another victim of the conflict – UN health agency

23 February 2017 – Acute shortage of critical medicines, limited fuel for electricity and specialized medical staff such as intensive care doctors and nurses having left Yemen have put innocent lives in danger, the United Nations health agency has warned.

According to the UN World Health Organization (WHO), only 45 per cent of the country's health facilities remain fully functional and accessible and at least 274 have been damaged or destroyed during the conflict.

On top of this, drastic budget cuts have left health facilities without funds for operational costs and health care workers without regular salaries since September 2016.

One such example is the 320-bed Al-Thawra Hospital, the main functioning health facility in Al-Hudaydah (Yemen's third largest city) and neighbouring governorates. Many health facilities in the area have already closed.

Staffed by more than 1,200 employees – many of whom have not received their salaries for the past five months – the hospital provides care to some 1,500 people every day. This is a five-fold increase over the numbers in 2012 due to the influx of people displaced by ongoing conflict.

Most of the patients who arrive are unable to pay the minimal fees for hospital services.

Despite this, no one is turned away from Al-Thawra Hospital and medical staff provide care to everyone, regardless of whether they can afford to pay, noted the WHO news release. Recently, however, the hospital had to stop providing food for inpatients due to lack of funds.

But there are fears that recent arrivals of thousands of displaced women, men and children in the governorate could overburden the already weakened health facilities and vulnerable host communities.

“The World Health Organization (WHO) assists us by providing fuel and medicines for emergency interventions, and supporting the hospital's therapeutic feeding centre,” said Khaled Suhail, Director of Al-Tharwa Hospital.

“However, with no funds for operational costs, we never know if we will still be open one month from now,” he added.

A collapsing health system
With more than 14.8 million people lacking access to basic health care, the current lack of funds means the situation will get much worseWHO Acting Representative in Yemen

According to WHO, since the escalation of the conflict in March 2015, health facilities across Yemen have reported more than 7,600 deaths and close to 42,000 people injured.

Malnutrition rates are also rising: almost 4.5 million people in Yemen, including 2 million children, require services to treat or prevent malnutrition, a 150 per cent increase since late 2014.

Of special concern are almost 462 000 children suffering from severe acute malnutrition and at risk of life-threatening complications such as respiratory infections or organ failure, said WHO.

And with severely limited budgets, things might get worse.

“With more than 14.8 million people lacking access to basic health care, the current lack of funds means the situation will get much worse,” said Nevio Zagaria, WHO Acting Representative in Yemen.

Responding to the crisis, the UN agency has established 15 therapeutic feeding centres in seven governorates, and plans to open 25 more as the numbers of malnourished children increases across the country, but its efforts are challenged by lack of funds.

“We are asked to fill gaps created by the collapsing health institutions,” noted Dr. Zagaria, adding: “[however] last year, [we] received less than half of the $124 million required.”

In 2017, UN agencies in the country and non-governmental organizations have appealed for $322 million to support health care in Yemen, of this amount WHO has requested $126 million.

“We urgently need resources to help support the health system as a whole, and are calling on donors to scale-up their support before more innocent lives are lost unnecessarily,” underscored Dr. Zagaria.

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Syria negotiations may not yield breakthrough, but momentum needs to be maintained – UN envoy

INTERNATIONAL, 22 February 2017 – A day before negotiations on the crisis in Syria kick off in Geneva, the United Nations Special Envoy for the war-torn country acknowledged that while he is “not expecting a breakthrough,” the proactive momentum needs to be sustained, and the top United Nations relief official told the Security Council that the country’s humanitarian needs would remain critical for a long time.

“As has been stated so many times already, there is no humanitarian or military solution to this conflict,” the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator and Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Stephen O’Brien, told the Security Council today.

“A genuine political commitment to peace will be needed if 2017 is to offer any different prospect than the death and destruction of the past six years,” he added, emphasizing the need for fighting to stop.

The conflict, now into its sixth year, has left hundreds of thousands of women, men and children dead and millions more dependent on aid both within the country and beyond Syria’s borders.

However, humanitarian actors continue face myriad challenges in reaching those most in need.

In particular, Mr. O’Brien voiced serious concerns over continued attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure, which have further limited humanitarian access to those areas, as well as leading to further displacements that in turn add to the humanitarian needs.

He also underlined that the conflict has taken its worst toll on children: thousands have been killed and maimed or have lost their parents to the violence. Many more have suffered physical and psychological trauma, forced into early marriages and lag years behind in school.

The formal education system has lost about 150,000 education personnel and one in three schools in the country have been damaged, destroyed or rendered inaccessible, and 5.82 million children and youth from pre-school to secondary school-age are in need of education assistance inside Syria.

Concluding his briefing, the UN relief chief urged: “The eyes of all of Syria, and the eyes of the world, are looking to Geneva [where intra-Syrian negotiations will be held].”

“Millions of battered and beleaguered women, men and children depend on meaningful action and the constructive engagement by the Syrian parties and their allies […] to assure Syrians that an end to the conflict may finally be within reach.”

I am not expecting a breakthrough, but I am determined to keep the momentum – UN envoy

Also today, speaking to the press in Geneva, the UN Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, said is critical that the momentum provided by the negotiations “outpace” those that wished to see the negotiations come to nothing.

“There are spoilers, we have seen it all the time during the last talks and perhaps they may even be attempting or tempted to [do] something before or during the talks to provoke one side or the other to walk out,” he warned.

“I am not expecting a breakthrough, but I am expecting and determined for keeping a very proactive momentum,” said Mr. de Mistura, highlighted the need to “outpace” those wished to “spoil” the negotiations and see that it come to nothing.

“There is a rush between us and the spoilers […] we have to outpace those few but clear spoilers with momentum on the political track,” he added.

On the eve of the UN-facilitated negotiations between the parties to the conflict in Syria, Mr. de Mistura said he would be continuing to push for a resolution to the conflict based on Security Council Resolution 2254 that endorsed a road map for peace process in war-battered Middle East nation, including non-sectarian governance, a new constitution and free and fair elections.

Also, the UN envoy said that while the ceasefire remained fragile, it was largely holding and noted that “we would not have been able to have these talks if there was a breakdown of the cease-fire.”

Mr. de Mistura added that the bottom line remains that it is “delicate moment” and that there are fragile incidents but these need to be controlled and need to be taken care of.

In conclusion, he noted that one should not focus too much on the rhetoric and even dismissive statements but instead to “look for the substance, for what would happen during the talks and at the end of the talks,” he said.

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OSCE seeks to defuse conflicts, combat radicalization and build trust, UN Security Council told

INTERNATIONAL, 22 February 2017 – Multilateral cooperation is the only way to achieve peace, security and stability, and there is no alternative to it, Austria’s Foreign Minister told the United Nations Security Council today, underscoring the work of his country in its role as the Chair of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).

“As you can imagine, chairing OSCE is not an easy task,” said Sebastian Kurz, Federal Minister for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs of Austria, citing the difficulty in finding consensus among the regional body’s 57 States.

“Austria has taken over the OSCE chairmanship at a critical moment. Everywhere we look, there are grave threats to peace and security,” he added.

He said that the Austrian chairmanship will seek to contribute to defusing existing conflicts, create a platform to assists States in their efforts to combat radicalization and violent extremism, and help rebuild trust between the OSCE States.

On the crisis in and around Ukraine, he said the OSCE has demonstrated its crucial role in brokering a ceasefire and its special monitoring mission has helped prevent a worsening of the situation. However, support is need to increase the number of monitors on the ground, improve the technical equipment for monitoring and extend the operating hours along the contact line between Government and non-Government armed forces, he said.

Austria will also support all efforts to achieve progress on other conflict situations, including those in Transnistria, Georgia and Nagorno-Karabakh.

Turning to radicalization and terrorism, he said more than 10,000 people from the OSCE area have joined the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh). The most vulnerable group to be radicalized is youth, Mr. Kurz said, adding that he has appointed Peter Neumann, an expert on terrorism, as his special representative on radicalisation.

The Austrian chairmanship will also try to resume discussions on conventional arms control in Europe, and seek to launch a structured dialogue on current and future challenges and risks to security in the OSCE area.

Cyber security and social and economic cooperation – two issues discussed in Vienna recently - are areas where everybody stands to gain from more cooperation, and success in these areas will lead to more trust, he stressed.

“The same is true for human rights, the rule of law and democracy. Together we can strengthen the cohesiveness and resilience of our societies to better counter threats to our security,” he said.

In closing, he welcomed the establishment of a UN liaison office in Vienna that would enable even stronger cooperation between the OSCE and the UN.

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Business-as-usual not an option with future global food security in jeopardy, cautions UN agency

INTERNATIONAL, 22 February 2017 – Warning that diminishing natural resources and a changing climate have put humankind’s future ability to feed itself “in jeopardy,” the United Nations underlined today that while the planet still has the potential to produce enough food, “major transformations” are needed to make production sustainable and to ensure that all of humanity benefits.

In The Future of Food and Agriculture: Trends and Challenges report, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) highlights that while “very real and significant” progress in reducing hunger has been achieved over the past 30 years, these have often come at a heavy cost to nature.

“Almost half of the forests that once covered the Earth are now gone. Groundwater sources are being depleted rapidly. Biodiversity has been deeply eroded,” noted the report.

“[As a result,] planetary boundaries may well be surpassed, if current trends continue,” added FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva, underlining the gravity of the situation.

With global population estimated to reach 10 billion by 2050, world-wide demand for agricultural products could be pushed by as much as 50 per cent above current levels, intensifying pressures on already-strained natural resources.

At the same time, the report argues, greater numbers of people will be eating fewer cereals and larger amounts of meat, fruits, vegetables and processed food – a result of an ongoing global dietary transition that will further add to those pressures, driving more deforestation, land degradation and greenhouse gas emissions.

According to FAO, without a push to invest in and reorganizing food systems, far too many people will remain hungry in 2030 – the year by which the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aim to eradicate chronic food insecurity and malnutrition.

“Without additional efforts to promote pro-poor development, reduce inequalities and protect vulnerable people, more than 600 million people would still be undernourished in 2030,” the report noted.

In fact, the current rate of progress would not even be enough to eradicate hunger by 2050, it added.

Climate change will affect every aspect of food production

On top of these challenges, climate change adds a new level of complexity. Its increasing impacts are leading to greater variability of precipitation and increasing the frequency of droughts and floods.

In the midst of this multifaceted issue, the UN agency is advocating for a shift to more sustainable food systems that make more efficient use of land, water and other inputs, and for sharply reducing the use of fossil fuels in agriculture.

Reducing fossil fuel dependency will also help cut agricultural green-house gas emissions, conserve biodiversity, and reduce waste, it added.

Furthermore, investments in agriculture and agri-food systems, as well as in research and development, are needed to sustainably boost food production and help producers better cope with water scarcity and other climate change impacts.

The social dimension to food security

Also in the report, FAO has called for preserving and enhancing livelihoods of small-scale and family farmers, and ensuring access to food for the most vulnerable.

Amid the core challenge of having to produce more with less, it has underlined that the twin-track approach is needed to immediately tackle undernourishment, and that pro-poor investments in productive activities – especially agriculture and in rural economies – could sustainably increase income-earning opportunities of the poor.

In addition to boosting production and resilience, it is equally important to create food supply chains that better connect farmers in low- and middle-income countries to urban markets.

“Major transformations in agricultural systems, rural economies and natural resource management will be needed if we are to meet the multiple challenges before us and realize the full potential of food and agriculture to ensure a secure and healthy future for all people and the entire planet,” read the report.

“Business-as-usual” is not an option.

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Haiti: New grant to help UNICEF strengthen efforts to tackle cholera

CARIBBEAN, 22 February 2017 – A new grant from the Government of Japan will allow the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to help reduce cholera-related morbidity and mortality in Haiti in 2017 and 2018, the UN agency said in a news release.

“With this gift from the Japanese people, we will strengthen the axes of the fight against cholera in the protection of the Haitian population, especially children,” said Marc Vincent, UNICEF Representative in Haiti, welcoming the contribution.

“Japan is a key partner and we thank the Japanese people for their continued support,” he added.

Haiti has been dealing with a cholera outbreak since October 2010, some nine months after it suffered a devastating earthquake. The outbreak has affected an estimated 788,000 people and claimed the lives of more than 9,000. Concerted national and international efforts, backed by the United Nations, have resulted in a 90 per cent reduction in the number of suspected cases.

The $2.6 million grant (nearly 300 million Japanese yen) will help strengthen the island nation’s epidemiological coordination and surveillance; and support conducting timely surveys, rapid response teams and case management, as well as improving and increasing awareness of cholera-related hygiene.

According to UNICEF, the cholera epidemic in Haiti continues to be the largest in the western hemisphere. More than 41,000 suspected cases of cholera have been reported throughout Haiti in 2016.

With the new funds, interventions will be implemented across the island nation with an emphasis on the cholera-prone departments of Center, North, West, Grand'Anse, Sud (South), and Artibonite.

Two of these departments – Grand'Anse and Sud – were where Hurricane Matthew made landfall in early October, inflicting much devastation as it cut a path of destruction though country.

In the news release, the Ambassador of Japan to Haiti, Yoshiaki Hatta, said that the grant had been decided upon a resurgence in suspected cholera cases resulting from the deterioration of the sanitary and hygiene situation caused by rainy seasons or natural disasters.

Japan considers that this issue should be addressed in collaboration with the Government of Haiti and the international community, the Ambassador added, expressing appreciation for UNICEF, and calling on all stakeholders to strengthen their collaboration in the fight against cholera.

Meanwhile, a Multi Partner Trust Fund (MPTF) for the UN Haiti Cholera Response has been set up to enable Member States, other partners and individuals (including UN staff) to contribute. To date, it has received funds from five Member States: Chile ($250,000); France ($638,000); India ($100,000); Republic of Korea ($1 million); and Liechtenstein ($50,000).

As for other resources provided outside of the Trust Fund, Canada has made a $4,600,000 parallel contribution in support of the UN Haiti Cholera Response – with some of the funds going to UNICEF & PAHO.

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Nigeria seeks $1 billion to provide life-saving aid to millions in country's northeast – UN

INTERNATIONAL, 22 February 2017 – As relief organizations increase response to the humanitarian emergency in the north-east of Nigeria, timely donor support amounting to a little over $1 billion is required to sustain life-saving assistance to millions people devastated by Boko Haram-linked violence, the United Nations relief aid wing has said.

“If the resources do not arrive in time, one in five children suffering sever acute malnutrition could die,” said Peter Lundberg, the Deputy Humanitarian Coordinator for Nigeria in a press release issued yesterday by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

“The likelihood of a child with severe acute malnutrition surviving is nine times less than a properly nourished child,” he added.

According to OCHA, the eight-year-long conflict has left some 8.5 million people in need of humanitarian assistance in the worst-affected states of Nigeria's north-east. In the coming months, around 5.1 million people will face severe food insecurity in the region, where some 1.8 million people have been displaced and millions are exposed to violence and abuse.

“Food assistance alone will cost $1 million a day to avoid famine in a region where 450,000 children under five will suffer from severe acute malnutrition this year,” said Mr. Lundberg. “Sustained and timely financial support is needed to maintain the scale-up in operations desperately needed in the north-east of Nigeria.”

During a recent visit by representatives of 12 donor countries and agencies to Borno state, in the run up to the 24 February Humanitarian Conference on Nigeria and Lake Chad region, they lauded the scale-up of humanitarian operations in the north-east and emphasized the need for more funding, a stance the humanitarian community in Nigeria concurs with.

“We are grateful to our donors who have enabled us scale up the response and appreciate their continued commitment. We look forward to receiving the needed resources to implement the 2017 Humanitarian Response Plan for Nigeria,” Mr. Lundberg said.

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