Hunger killed at least 500 children in war-torn Sudan

Hunger killed at least 500 children in war-torn Sudan

TEHRAN, Aug. 23 (MNA) – At least 498 children in Sudan and likely hundreds more have died from hunger, including two dozen babies in a state orphanage, as critical services run out of food or close, said Save the Children.

Since the violence broke out in April, Save the Children has been forced to close 57 of its nutrition facilities, with 31,000 children missing out on treatment for malnutrition and related illnesses across the country. In the 108 facilities, the agency still operates, therapeutic food stocks are running critically low, with buffer stock, or emergency supplies, now being used in the most extreme cases.

In Gedaref state in eastern Sudan, at least 132 children died from malnutrition between April and July, with 36% of all cases of children admitted to one state hospital with the condition dying from it or related illnesses. The hospital has also reported a significant increase in cases of malnutrition, with children recently displaced from Khartoum and living in squalid camps particularly affected, African Business reported.

In White Nile state, at least 316 children mostly under five, died from malnutrition or associated illnesses between May and July, and over 2,400 cases of children with severe acute malnutrition – the deadliest form of malnutrition – were admitted to nutrition facilities since the beginning of the year.

In Khartoum, at least 50 children, including at least two dozen babies, died of starvation or related illnesses in a state orphanage after fighting prevented staff from accessing the building to care for them.

Even before the conflict started, funding shortages had led to Sudan nearly exhausting its supplies of high-calorie and micronutrient rich peanut pastes, essential for treating malnutrition, including the “Plumpy’Nut” and “Plumpy’Sup” pastes.

In May Sudan’s only factory for manufacturing “Plumpy’Nut” was burned to the ground. The factory, which supplied aid agencies like Save the Children and the World Food Program (WFP), had been producing around 10,000 tons of the paste each year.

Dozens of warehouses storing food for WFP as well as aid organisations like Save the Children have been raided since the start of the conflict, with WFP declaring in May that at least US$14 million of food supplies had been looted. Dozens of WFP trucks are also being delayed at border points, further exacerbating the crisis.


Source: Mehr News