UN says alarmed by prolonged drought in southern Ethiopia – AFP

March 1st, 2008 Print Print Email Email

The United Nations said Friday it was alarmed by a prolonged drought that has worsened food and water availability in Ethiopia’s southern Borena region.Assessment teams have been sent to the area where insufficient October and December rainfall has spurred a surge in disease outbreaks and lifestock death, according to the UN office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

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The United Nations said Friday it was alarmed by a prolonged drought that has worsened food and water availability in Ethiopia’s southern Borena region.Assessment teams have been sent to the area where insufficient October and December rainfall has spurred a surge in disease outbreaks and lifestock death, according to the UN office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).


“Death and poor health conditions of livestock, dwindling water supplies and ongoing human disease outbreaks are having a negative impact upon health, nutrition and wellbeing in the region,” it said.
Around 4,660 livestock have died since mid-February, OCHA added in a statement.
“According to woreda (zonal) officials in Arero, limited availability of water for animal consumption is contributing to poor health of livestock and reported cases of diseases including: Anthrax, black leg, bloody diarrhoea and foot and mouth disease.”
Despite not reaching full drought proportions, poor rainfall in an upcoming season would have serious impacts on health and livelihoods in the entire region, OCHA said, calling for intervention from government and aid groups.

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