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  • Hunger a product of conflict.

    Hunger a product of conflict. | Photo: Reuters

Published 2 April 2019

World hunger is on the rise again and two thirds of the world's starving population is located in just eight countries.

In total, around 113 million people are affected by severe hunger and malnutrition in 2018. Although numbers have decreased from 124 million in 2017, it is still concerning as violent conflicts seem to have taken off since 2010.

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The countries most affected by hunger are Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Nigeria, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria and specifically Yemen, which faces a blockade from sea and land. According to the European Union, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, and the U.N. World Food Program, hunger has also increased or remained the same in 17 additional countries. 

War and conflict are not the only reason, speculation on markets on resources and food prices also increasingly drive poverty and hunger. A more recent problem that seems to get worse and worse is climate change. Climate change and natural disasters are affecting an estimated 29 million people and it will only get worse. 

Hunger and malnutrition are a vicious cycle. It is both, the cause of poverty and inequality and also a contributor to it. According to the United Nations, gender equality polcies could make a huge difference for the suffering of this world “if women farmers had the same access to resources as men, the number of hungry in the world could be reduced by up to 150 million.” While there are 113 million people suffering from severe hunger, 815 million people in the world regularly go hungry as well. 

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