Khartoum, 12 February 2024 (TDI): UNICEF says that 700,000 Sudanese children face the worst malnutrition during the Sudan Civil War. On Friday, it reported this shocking news of life-threatening malnutrition being faced by Sudanese children this year. Also, the fear of tens of thousands of deaths potentially is present.
James Elder, spokesperson for the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) states that the world has witnessed the largest displacement of children in Sudan. He stated that four million children have been displaced and that equates to 13,000 children every day, for 300 days.
He further added, “They do not have any safety and they don’t have any more worldly possessions as well. They have lost their friends and family members and their hope is fading day by day”.
A conflict lasting 10 months in Sudan has caused extensive destruction to the country’s infrastructure. Also, it raised concerns about famine and forced millions of people to flee both within and outside the country.
The conflict is taking place between the Sudanese armed forces and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF). Unfortunately, both conflicting factions have subsequently ignored calls for peace from regional and international entities.
According to UN reports, half of Sudan’s population, approximately 25 million people, need humanitarian assistance and protection.
Earlier this week, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) appealed for $2.7 billion to address the most critical needs within Sudan.
However, the appeal has only received four percent of the required funding despite the continuous and urgent warnings. The magnitude and seriousness of the hunger and displacement crisis in Sudan is concerning.
Plight of Sudanese children
UNICEF stated that without improved access and additional support, they won’t be able to provide treatment for more than 300,000 of those affected. Although UNICEF has to look after 700,000 children in Sudan.
In such a scenario, tens of thousands are likely to perish. Elder described severe acute malnutrition as the most perilous form. This is increasing the likelihood of death from diseases like cholera and malaria.
Furthermore, he mentioned a projection of 3.5 million children suffering from severe acute malnutrition. In addition, UNICEF supplies “ready-to-use therapeutic food” (RUTF). It is a life-saving product for treating severe waste in children under five years old, in Sudan.
Also, Elder describes a 500% increase within just one year in incidents of murders, and sexual violence. Moreover, there have been incidents occurred in which the recruiment of the children takes place in armed conflict. Thus, Sudanese children face worst malnutrition during this Civil War.