Ethiopia, Somalia eye shift from military to economic cooperation
Somalia is facing its worst drought in 40 years following the failure of the rainy season for 4 years in a row, according to the UN.
MOGADISHU, Somalia - The United Nations envoy for Somalia said on Wednesday that the country is currently facing a humanitarian catastrophe as a result of the worst drought in at least forty years.
About 7.8 million Somalis, almost half of the population, have been affected by the drought, according to James Swan during his briefing to the UN security council on the political, security, and humanitarian situation in Somalia.
James Swan said Somalia is on the verge of famine similar to what happened in 2011 which claimed the lives of thousands of people. He appealed for urgent life-saving assistance for Somalia.
Despite calls for aid, Al-Shabaab remains an impediment to the delivery of humanitarian supplies to the drought-hit people in the south and central regions of Somalia. Last Friday, the group killed 25 people after an attack on a food convoy near Beledweyne city, 300 kilometers north of Mogadishu.
As the need worsens and the fifth rainy season is predicted to fail, it is necessary to increase the assistance. I call for the facilitation of the delivery of the assistance," said Swan.
In June, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) released $350 million in development aid for Somalia. Other donors have resumed budget subsidies to the country to sustain economic reform efforts.
Somalia is facing its worst drought in 40 years following the failure of the rainy season for 4 years in a row, according to the UN. The insecurity is exacerbating further the ongoing crisis.
He affirmed Ethiopia’s readiness to work at various levels with the new Somali government “with particular emphasis on economic growth,” according to a statement from Abiy’s office.