from MARIO RAJOMAZANDRY in Antananarivo, Madagascar
ANTANANARIVO, (CAJ News) – MADAGASCAR’S worst drought in 40 years has left more than 1 million people facing hunger and the island country on the brink of a human rights crisis.
Donors, foreign governments and regional leaders have therefore been urged to intervene.
“The rights of more than a million people are currently threatened in southern Madagascar, with thousands at risk of starvation and more than a million struggling to access sufficient quantities of food,” said Tamara Léger, Amnesty International’s Madagascar Programme Advisor.
“The situation is dire and there is an immediate need for coordinated regional and global action to help avert what could easily become a human catastrophe,” Léger added.
The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and World Food Programme (WFP) last week issued an urgent warning to draw international attention to the humanitarian crisis unfolding in southern Madagascar.
According to the WFP, around 1,14 million people are facing serious food insecurity, with 14 000 of those in a “catastrophe” situation.
Dozens of deaths have been recorded in some villages, but there are no precise estimates of famine related deaths.
“Regional leaders and the international community cannot afford to stand by and watch while people die of hunger in Madagascar. The international community must come together and mobilise resources to help the country in this hour of need,” Léger said.
– CAJ News