Sudan may become 'world's largest humanitarian crisis,' McCain warns



cindy mccain lectern ap

World Food Programme (WFP) Executive Director Cindy McCain warned Sunday of the worsening humanitarian crisis in Sudan.

In an interview on CBS News’s “Face the Nation,” McCain stressed the importance of “safe and unfettered access” for the organization to deliver food to the war-torn country.

“Sudan has the real possibility of becoming the world’s largest humanitarian crisis,” McCain said. “We cannot get food in — we can barely get food in — we certainly aren’t getting it in at scale, and you see the results of what can happen if people aren’t fed.”

McCain noted that the situation is likely to get more difficult in the coming months, saying, “We’re also coming into the lean season, which makes it very difficult many times for our trucks to even operate if they can get in.”

“We need more crossings. We need safe and unfettered access,” she said, comparing the obstacles in Sudan to the ones WFP faces in delivering food to Gazans.

“Bottom line is people are going to starve to death unless we get in there,” she added.

McCain stressed the potential consequences if the world ignores the crisis unfolding in Sudan.

“Sudan is a forgotten crisis, and its implications being a destabilizing factor in that region, can have catastrophic effects as it comes down the line,” she said. “So it’s really imperative that we get the crossings open, that we have safe access, that the various factions, understand that we are, you know, we’re humanitarian, and we need to have the access.”

The WFP has been calling for “warring parties to grant unrestricted access to crisis-hit communities,” as hunger rages in the region. About 18 million people face “acute hunger” in Sudan, including five million who are at “emergency levels of hunger.”

The WFP said nearly 90 percent of those at “emergency” levels are in areas where access is “extremely limited due to heavy fighting and restrictions.”

The WFP announced Thursday an expansion of its emergency food and nutrition assistance in Sudan.



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