News in Brief 03 April 2017 (AM)

3 April 2017

More than 300,000 people displaced from West Mosul: UNHCR

More than 300,000 Iraqis have fled fighting in West Mosul and surrounding areas and the number continues to grow, according to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

The Iraqi army and its allies launched the offensive to retake the city from ISIL extremists last October and it is now in the final stages.

The government opened a new camp in South Mosul on Friday because of the continuous flow of internally displaced people, or IDPs, from the city.

The displaced are fleeing areas recently retaken by the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), and areas of west Mosul still under armed groups’ control, the agency says.

When interviewed by UNHCR, people highlighted the “enormous risks” they took to flee areas controlled by extremist fighters.

They were reportedly being targeted by snipers and homemade bombs, or IEDs, and being used as human shields.

New five-year plan launched to end hunger in Zimbabwe: WFP

The World Food Programme (WFP) and the Government of Zimbabwe have launched a five-year plan to end hunger in the country.

The new plan will maintain a strong emergency capacity, while focussing on building the resilience of vulnerable, food-insecure Zimbabweans, according to Eddie Rowe, WFP Zimbabwe Representative and Country Director.

WFP will also help the government move away from short-term assistance to longer-term technical assistance, building sustainable systems to eradicate hunger and improve nutrition.

Over 4 million people were food-insecure at the peak of the hunger season in January 2017 and 27 per cent of children suffer stunted growth.

Meanwhile, 63 per cent of Zimbabweans live below the poverty line.

WHO to help bring health care to South Sudan rural communities

A new approach to community health service delivery is being rolled out by South Sudan’s Ministry of Health together with the World Health Organization (WHO).

The “Boma Health Initiative” aims to deliver health care and public health programmes at the community level.

The communities are divided into the lowest administrative units called Bomas, overseen by a government administrator.

Currently, only 40 per cent of people in South Sudan are within reach of health facilities and have consistent access to primary healthcare services.

Communicable diseases are a leading cause of mortality and morbidity in South Sudan, and the estimated 12.3 million people in the country are at risk of disease outbreaks.

Malaria is also one of the biggest causes of illness and death in South Sudan.

Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.

Duration:  2'49"


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