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WFP wary of South Sudan strife

13 January 2014, 19:59

Nairobi - The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is worried by the worsening situation in South Sudan saying the influx of refugees into neighbouiring countries in Kenya would impact on its resources.

In addition to support for conflict-affected people inside South Sudan, WFP is also assisting tens of thousands of refugees who have fled across South Sudan's borders into countries, including Uganda, Ethiopia and Kenya.

Thousands have fled to the Kakuma Refugee Camp, the second largest such camp in Kenya.

It is believed about 20 000 have sought refuge in the camp bringing the camp populations to about 130 000.

"We have mobilized quickly to provide immediate relief to people seeking safety across South Sudan's borders," said aid WFP East and Central Africa Regional Director, Valerie Guarnieri.

"But all of our refugee assistance programmes in the region were already facing severe funding shortfalls before this crisis, and a new influx of refugees will strain their resources even further," Guarnieri.

Meanwhile, on Monday, WFP announced it had launched a new emergency operation to expand assistance to people affected by the crisis in South Sudan and is working to overcome challenges preventing urgently needed relief from reaching those who need it.

The US$57.8 million, three-month operation aims to provide emergency food assistance to up to 400 000 internally-displaced people, including specialized nutritional support for new mothers and young children who are most at risk from a disruption in their food supply.

- CAJ News


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