UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres visited a camp for internally displaced people in Baidoa, in Somalia’s southwest on Tuesday as part of his ‘solidarity visit’ to Somalia. Speaking through a translator, Guterres sat down with some of the displaced to hear their concerns.
Over a million people have been displaced in Somalia by a drought which has led to near famine conditions and an Islamist insurgency waged by Al shabaab1. Guterres remarked that “this combination of terrorism and drought largely caused by the climate change creates a perfect storm for the people of Somalia and requires massive support from the international community”.
The United Nations has launched a $2.6 billion call for humanitarian assistance, but Guterres said the appeal was only 15 percent funded. While famine thresholds have not been reached in Somalia, the UN says about half its population will need humanitarian assistance this year, with 8.3 million affected by the drought.