• Sun. Dec 3rd, 2023

Food For the Hungry

Because So Much Is Riding On Your Food For the Hungry

Sudan erupts as millions in Africa go hungry due to Ukraine war and sanctions on Russia

Thousands of workers and students took to the streets in cities across Sudan in protest at rocketing food and fuel prices. Food prices are 100 to 200 percent higher than they were a year ago and inflation stands at 250 percent.

In the capital Khartoum last week, the protesters were met with tear gas and stun grenades as they came within 200 metres of the presidential palace.

Sudanese anti-coup protesters take part in ongoing demonstrations against the military rule in Khartoum, Sudan, March 14, 2022. (AP Photo/Marwan Ali)

The mass protests follow the sharp dive in the value of the Sudanese pound in the last month, as the military junta ended its fixed currency policy, and take place alongside ongoing strikes by teachers and railway workers in Atbara over their abysmally low salaries.

According to the United Nation’s World Food Programme (WFP), nearly half of Sudan’s 44 million people will face hunger this year as a result of the military’s ouster of Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdouk last October (prompting international financial institutions to suspend billions of dollars in crucial budget aid), the war in Ukraine and sanctions imposed on Russia.

The WFP says that about 20 million people are likely to be at “emergency” or “crisis” levels of “acute food insecurity,” double 2021’s figure. The situation has worsened dramatically due to soaring global grain prices, the shortage of foreign currency and drought in some parts of the country, fueling the escalating protest movement demanding an end to military rule.

Like many countries in Africa, Sudan sourced about 35 percent of its wheat imports in 2021 from Russia and Ukraine and now must find an alternative supplier demanding far higher prices. Last year Russia and Ukraine accounted for nearly one third of the world’s grain exports, one fifth of its corn trade and almost 80 percent of sunflower oil production. According to the US Department of Agriculture, world wheat supplies will tighten, with exports from Russia and Ukraine likely to be 7 million tonnes smaller than expected before the war.


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