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Step up response to E Africa, celebs say

2011-07-25 09:19

Rome - Bob Geldof, Stephen Fry and Eddie Izzard joined other celebrities and activists on Monday in urging world leaders to step up their response to the Horn of Africa crisis ahead of emergency talks in Rome.

"As we write, more than 11 million people are suffering the great agony of the worst famine in Africa for many years," they said in a joint letter released by One, a poverty campaign group founded by singer and activist Bono.

"It is incomprehensible that in 2011 anyone should die of starvation. Six hundred million dollars is needed now for our fellow humans. Not a great sum for the world, even in a time of great economic difficulty for some," the letter read.

The UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is hosting emergency talks in Rome on Monday as aid groups scramble to raise money for an estimated 12 million people on the brink of starvation in the drought-stricken region.

Tens of thousands of people have been killed by the worst drought in 60 years, which has wreaked havoc in war-torn Somalia but has also hit more widely in parts of Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan and Uganda, the UN says.

"All can and should use this meeting to make their pledges and find this money without reservation, prevarication or equivocation," said the campaigners including actress Kristin Scott Thomas and director Richard Curtis.

An online petition by One which calls urgently on world leaders not only to provide the necessary funds now but to keep their promises to invest in crisis prevention has been signed by 37 035 people so far.

Comments
  • Douglas - 2011-07-25 12:06

    Without doubt the famine in the horn of Africa is a disaster, but a disaster that is as a result of human error within Africa and in the West. The aid that has been provided to Africa over the years has resulted in a small group of individuals massively enriching themselves allowing them to rise to the level of African Kings. Once the have set up their autocratic often violent governments they actively introduce reforms to impoverish the nations they lead and the people that live within the boundaries of their control. These demagogues are able to retain power even in the direst of situation like this famine because the international community props up the murderous dictators. The international community provides food and monetary aid that never reaches the people for whom it is intended as the leaders within the impoverished areas are placed in charge of distribution, as a result their supporters receive food and whatever is left is sold in order that the murderous traitors that have led their people to hell can purchase firearms for their soldiers to further suppress the poor bastards forced to live under their evil. The West, the East and anyone considering giving anything to Africa to step back, see how you can help Africa rather than propagating a system that kills thousands every day. Let Africa sort its problems out, and this is going to mean thousands of deaths that as a human race we should be ashamed to have allowed, but at least there is purpose in it, for Africa.

      Wonderboy - 2011-07-25 14:29

      I cannot agree with you more. It started with a few hundred thousand at first and grew to a million and now we have a few million people starving. The problem is just getting worse because of the intervention from the west and the UN.

      Anton - 2011-07-25 14:42

      Wonderboy, " getting worse, because of the intervention of the West and the UN" Certainly one of the more crazy comments. Well done !!!

      daaivark - 2011-07-25 14:44

      "because of"..... Wonderboy, are you nuts?

  • Douglas - 2011-07-25 16:16

    I don't think wonderboy is crazy, it is because of the intervention by the west and the UN that Africa has allowed itself to fall into complete disarray. The leaders are not accountable for their actions against the people and the people are unable to resist because the UN and the west are propping up these violent corrupt regimes with "AID"

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