1000s in Libya running out of food

2011-07-05 15:10
Geneva - Tens of thousands of people living in Libya's western mountains region are running short of food and are increasingly dependent on food aid to survive, the World Food Programme said on Tuesday.

The first evaluation mission by the United Nations to this region "has found that food security is of major concern for the people there", said Emilia Casella, spokesperson for the UN food agency.

"People were depending entirely on food assistance for their survival," she added.

The mission travelled to Nalut, Wazin, Jadu and Zintan and "found only two cows during their entire mission, they found no sheep, no goats".

"People have been selling off their livestock or consuming their livestock," said Casella.

The mission was "really shocked there is really no trade going on, shops are closed, civils servents have not been paid since February," she described.

As a result, the people are left with a "very restrictive diet" with no access to eggs, meat or fish.

The WFP has sent 800 cubic metres of food in the region where it has reached 125 000 of the most vulnerable people.

The UN refugee agency warned in June that an aid crisis appeared to be looming in Libya and more international relief may soon be needed, as the prolonged conflict and sanctions stymie the regime's ability to deliver aid.

- SAPA
Read more on:    wfp  |  libya  |  libya protests  |  north africa  |  uprisings
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