南索馬里饑荒蔓延至5地區 數萬名兒童已不幸死亡

 

南索馬里饑荒蔓延至5地區 數萬名兒童已不幸死亡

新聞稿 12:00
On 30 July, a child is treated for malnutrition at a hospital in Hagadera, one of three refugee camps near the north-eastern town of Dadaab. UNICEF senior staff are visiting the Dadaab camps and host community, and are consulting with community leaders on how to best provide assistance.

By 29 July 2011, the crisis in the Horn of Africa  affecting primarily Kenya, Somalia, Ethiopia and Djibouti  continues, with a worsening drought, rising food prices and an ongoing conflict in Somalia. More than 12 million people are threatened by the regions worst drought in 60 years. Somalia faces one of the worlds most severe food security crises as it continues to endure an extended humanitarian emergency, with tens of thousands fleeing into Kenya and Ethiopia. More than 10,000 Somalis a week are now arriving in the Dadaab camps in north-eastern Kenya, where aid partners are struggling to meet the needs of 400,000 people. In drought-affected areas of Kenya, Somalia, Ethiopia and Djibouti, some 500,000 severely malnourished children are at imminent risk of dying, while a further 1.6 million moderately malnourished children and the wider-affected population are at high risk of disease. In northern Kenya, more than 25 per cent of children suffer from global acute malnutrition. UNICEF, together with Governments, UN, NGO and community partners, is supporting a range of interventions and essential services, especially for the displaced and for refugees, including feeding programmes, immunization  mass vaccination campaigns are now underway in drought-affected parts of Kenya and Somalia  and other health outreach, as well as access to safe water and to improve sanitation. In Kenya, the Ministry of Health, UNICEF and the World Health Organization (WHO) have reached 290,000 children with polio and measles vaccinations in refugee host communities near the Dadaab camps. UNICEF is providing the vaccines, as well as deworming tablets and vitamin A (to boost childrens immunity). A similar campaign for refugees in the Dadaab camps is planned for early August. A joint United Nations appeal for humanitarian assistance for the region requires US$2.5 billion, less than half of which has been committed.
香港,2011年8月4日——這是一次極之嚴重的兒童饑荒!昨日南索馬里再多3個地區宣佈陷入饑荒,包括:索馬里首都摩加迪沙、阿弗戈伊走廊,及中謝貝利位於巴勒阿德及卡達雷的農牧地區。在饑荒地區,平均每3個月就有1成5歲以下兒童死亡,而當地至今已有數以萬計的兒童抵受不住饑荒折磨,不幸喪生。

計及上月20日宣佈饑荒的巴科勒及下謝貝利2區,索馬里至今已有5個地區陷入饑荒。這5個地區的災情已超越緊急情況的界定標準,急性營養不良率遠高於15%,部分地區甚至高出3倍之多;重度營養不良率亦高達16.9%。顯示這批營養不良的兒童再得不到救援,將可能在短短數周內死亡。

至今,索馬里大旱已不只是一次糧食危機,而是一次關乎兒童生死存亡的嚴重危機。受災兒童不只飽受着饑餓和缺水的威脅,他們感染麻疹、瘧疾、腹瀉及肺炎等各種致命疾病的風險亦都相當高。尤其是在10月雨季來臨之時,當地更將可能大規模爆發瘧疾及麻疹疫症,情況實在不堪設想。

加上災區不少婦女和兒童,如今都孤立無援,安全備受威脅。他們為了尋求人道救援,不惜逃離家園,啟程前往摩加迪沙、國內其他地區甚至鄰近國家。此舉促使他們遭受性侵犯或暴力對待等危機大大增加。而無人陪伴照顧的兒童,一旦遇上虐待和剝削,就更是無力抵抗。

聯合國兒童基金會(UNICEF)正設法接觸待救的兒童,盡力搶先在災民踏上艱險旅途之前,將救援送到他們的居住地,以拯救更多脆弱及垂危的生命。

其中,UNICEF已於上月將大批營養物資運抵索馬里,包括342噸即食營養治療食品,足以治療23,300名營養不良的受災兒童。此外,UNICEF亦已啟動地毯式補充餵飼行動,為25,600戶家庭提供649噸糧食。因營養不良而垂死的兒童,只要接受到這些補充餵飼治療,將可於4至6星期內完全康復。為增援行動,本周將再有11班載貨航機抵達摩加迪沙,為災區提供更多營養救援物資。

而為了避免營養不良兒童,因感染疾病死亡,UNICEF亦於上周在南索馬里開展了防疫注射行動。至今,在摩加迪沙、拜多阿及蓋多,行動已為171,000名15歲以下兒童接種麻疹疫苗。只要交通能夠確保暢順,UNICEF將與世界衞生組織合作,進一步擴展行動,為250萬名受災兒童全面接種麻疹疫苗。

聯合國兒童基金香港委員會(HKCU)總幹事陳文端女士表示:「雖然各地已有不少捐款者及政府已為救災工作作出了重大貢獻,但要拯救災區兒童的生命,我們還需要大家給予更多、更多的支持。希望各界善長,不論已捐款支持或正計劃捐款支持的,都能夠繼續慷慨解囊,為爭取當地受災兒童的生存出一分力。」

UNICEF預計整個至少歷時半年的救援行動,將需籌集善款港幣24.5億元(3.14億美元),然而,至今善款數字仍與目標有達港幣15.6億元(2億美元)的差距。單單索馬里所需的援助善款,就要港幣10.2億元(1.31億美元)。

至昨日,HKCU已籌得港幣190萬元,以支持UNICEF的「非洲之角」救援行動。而由8月7至20日,HKCU與國泰航空合辦的「零錢布施」機上籌款活動,將作出特別安排,所籌得的善款將全部用作支援「非洲之角」的緊急救援行動。