UN calls for access to humanitarian aid as violence flares up in Haiti

The United Nations World Food Program (WFP) on Friday called for unrestricted access for aid agencies working in Haiti and the free flow of food products to prevent already severe hunger levels in the country from worsening.

Persistent attacks on civilians by armed groups have led to an increase in displacement and civil disorder in Haiti, where 44% of Haitians are facing severe food insecurity and struggling to feed their families, the organization reported in a release.

The UN unit continues to provide emergency food assistance in Haiti, although a recent increase in violence has prevented it from reaching more than 370,000 extremely food-insecure Haitians since early February.

“The recent increase in violence has blocked cargo routes, restricted movement and closed schools, forcing WFP to temporarily suspend many activities across the country,” said Jean-Martin Bauer, WFP Haiti Country Director. “Had to be stopped from.”

“1.4 million Haitians are suffering emergency levels of hunger,” he said, “unless we can effectively deliver aid, we risk seeing the most vulnerable fall into famine-like conditions.”

According to the entity, children are bearing the brunt of this latest wave of violence and dislocation, which has led to school closures in recent weeks, leaving nearly 300,000 schoolchildren without the daily hot meals provided by WFP and its partners. went. In many cases, it is the only complete meal of the day.

In Port-au-Prince, the World Food Program was also unable to deliver rations to 56,000 people in the Citi Soleil neighborhood, nor was it able to deliver food to the central kitchen that feeds people recently displaced fleeing violence.

In this sense, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) estimates that 20,000 people have fled their homes in the Haitian capital since the beginning of 2024.

In coordination with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour, WFP distributes payments to vulnerable households in the Grandense department through its Social Safety Net programme, which provides digital transfers using mobile phones, demonstrating how new technology can respond to extreme times. Can ensure continuous support. Instability.

The World Food Program said it aims to assist 2.4 million people by 2024 by providing cash and food rations and is working with the Haitian government to implement long-term programs to provide school meals and help Haitians grow their own food. Is working for.

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