Harsh weather adding to plight of Somalis

2011-08-23 13:43

Geneva - The UN refugee agency says unseasonably harsh weather is adding to the plight of some 1.4 million people displaced by famine in Somalia.

A spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees says people are exposed to scorching sun, strong winds and occasional heavy rains.

Adrian Edwards told reporters in Geneva on Tuesday that the plastic shelters many people are living in are insufficient to protect them from the elements.

He says UNHCR is shipping 20 000 additional emergency packages to the area to help the displaced.

According to the World Meteorological Agency the rainy season in the Horn of Africa normally starts in October.

Edwards says Somalis continue to stream to neighbouring countries because of the famine in southern Somalia.