9 May 2006
The Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Jean Ziegler, is deeply concerned by the drastic food cuts for millions of Sudanese as of May 2006. The United Nations World Food Programme has announced that it has been forced to cut food rations for millions of Sudanese following a huge shortfall in requested funds.
Millions of people in the Western Sudanese region of Darfur and Eastern Sudan who are already vulnerable to continued insecurity and displacement will receive daily rations of 1,050 kilocalories, only half of the minimum daily requirement of 2,100 kilocalories per person. This is insufficient to sustain a healthy life.
Despite repeated appeals to donors, the United Nations World Food Programme has received just $238 million, or 32 per cent, of the $746 million needed. By reducing daily rations, the agencies’ limited food stocks will last longer during the period between July to September when needs are greatest before the next harvest.
The Special Rapporteur recalled that under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, States parties have the obligation to respond quickly and in an appropriate manner to emergency food situations on the territory of a State Member of the United Nations. The Special Rapporteur requested that Member States immediately honour their legal obligations and ensure the realization of the right to food of the suffering populations, in close collaboration with the authorities of Sudan. This is urgently needed to save the lives of thousands of people in this country. In addition, the Special Rapporteur on the right to food calls on the Government of Sudan, in cooperation with the United Nations system, to address the problem of food security in a long-term perspective through adequate policies and programmes.
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