UN Secretary-General pleads for help for famine-stricken Somalia

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In short
The UN secretary general said that the UN needs approximately $1.6 billion in aid and so far, international donors have given only half that amount.

The United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, has made an impassioned plea to the international community  to avert a humanitarian catastrophe in Somalia, where severe drought has plunged communities in the southern region of the country into famine.

In an op-ed published in the Los Angeles Times on Friday, the secretary general said that the UN needs approximately $1.6 billion in aid and so far, international donors have given only half that amount. He said there is an urgent need for worldwide mobilization to turn the tide, and offer hope in the name of our common humanity.

UN agencies meet on Monday to coordinate the emergency response for Somalia and raise funds for immediate relief.

On Friday, the World Food Programme launched airlifts of aid into the famine stricken country, which is suffering the worst dorught in 60 years.

The World Food Programme says more than 11 million  people are in need of food aid and many people have already fled their homes in search off food and water.

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