News release

Somalia: Urgent food aid for 36 000 displaced people

Nairobi (ICRC) – The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), assisted by the Somali Red Crescent Society, just completed a distribution of food to over 36,000 displaced people in the town of Beletweyne, in the central part of the country. In addition, 4,000 children under five years of age and 860 pregnant women were provided with one-month supplies of therapeutic nutritional products.

 "In the Hiiran region, a combination of poor harvest, drought and protracted conflict forced many people in remote areas to relocate from their homes to Beletweyne, increasing the density of displaced people in the surrounding camps and exacerbating the already fragile food security situation there," said Kristy Manners, the ICRC's nutrition specialist for Somalia.

 The distribution just completed is part of an ongoing response. Earlier this year, an ICRC survey of the food security of displaced people in the camps revealed that aid was urgently required. A first round of food distributions took place in early July for the same displaced people – 6100 families. The second round just completed provides them with a month’s supply of food to help them cope with lingering food shortages.

 In Somalia, the ICRC works with the Somali Red Crescent to help victims of conflict or natural disaster. The organization provides emergency assistance, boosts self-reliance, promotes international humanitarian law, visits detainees and restores contact between family members separated by conflict.

 For further information, please contact:
Pedram Yazdi, ICRC Somalia delegation in Nairobi, tel: +254 700 888 131
Thomas Glass, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 22 730 3149 or +41 79 244 6405