Biotech Updates

FAO Appeals for Urgent Horn of Africa Funds

April 4, 2012

People in the Horn of Africa who have been devastated by continued drought for the last several months have declared significant improvement in their condition. However, it is still estimated that 8.1 million people are still in need of assistance in Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Djibouti. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) thus extends a continued appeal to the international community for $50 million to be able to continue efforts to improve the conditions in these areas.

Activities that require funding include the distribution of crops and vegetable seeds, helping implement small-scale irrigation schemes and running cash-for-work activities to restore vital agricultural infrastructure as well as fodder production and vaccination campaigns in the livestock industry.

FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva visited Somali and pledged to increase efforts in the Horn of Africa and stressed the importance of continued, coordinated actions that build up the resilience of local populations and link relief with development. "We can't avoid droughts, but we can put measures in place to try to prevent them from becoming a famine," he said.

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