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Children play on the ground outside their makeshift home in a refugee camp in Mogadishu, Somalia, Tuesday,Sept,20, 2016. A new U.N. report says five million people in Somalia are not getting enough food. That's more than 40 percent of the population of this chaotic Horn of Africa country. The report released Tuesday says the number of people who are food insecure has increased by 300,000 since February. The report says more than 300,000 children under 5 are acutely malnourished. (AP Photo/Farah Abdi Warsameh)

The UN said Africa is facing its worst hunger crisis in decades as foreign aid cuts loom


With 20 million people facing starvation, Africa is in the midst of its worst hunger crisis in decades, World Food Program spokesman David Orr said Thursday. 

President Trump's proposed budget would slash $10 billion in foreign aid, which Orr said would be disastrous.

"Any cuts at this time are extremely significant, not just for us but for any U.N. agencies and any aid organization," Orr said. The U.N. runs the WFP.

In this Monday, March 6, 2017 photo, South Sudanese men carry food distributed by the World Food Programme in Leer County Southern Leich State in South Sudan. An estimated 100,000 people are experiencing famine, and another 1 million people are on the brink of starvation, South Sudan's government and U.N. agencies said in late February. South Sudan is now Africa's largest migrant crisis as more than 3 million people have either fled the country or become internally displaced, according to the U.N. (AP Photo)

Last year, the U.S. contributed more than $2 billion to foreign aid, which constituted about a quarter of WFP's entire budget. But U.N. operations in South Sudan, Somalia, Yemen and Nigeria will require $5.6 billion alone.

The more dramatic cuts in any budgets, the more the number of debts, the more suffering there is going to be.
David Orr

The organization needs at least $4.4 billion by the end of March to prevent a catastrophe, Orr said. So far, it has received $90 million.

Orr said war and famine in the region are two of the key factors sparking the need for aid. 

Should the US cut spending on foreign aid?

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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