|Antonio Guterres, Secretary General |
of the United Nations.
Antonio Guterres, secretary general of the Organization of the United Nations (UN), on Monday warned of the repercussions of a war waged by Russia on Ukraine, which could result in "starvation storms" in many countries.
Stopping agricultural production in Ukraine and Russia because of conflict would hit "the poorest and hardest sow the seeds of political instability and unrest around the world," Guterres told reporters in New York. "This war affects more than Ukraine," he added. "Grain prices have exceeded the prices of the early Arab Spring and food riots of 2007-2008," he said. He added that the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization's (FAO) world food price index "is at its highest level on record."
"We must do everything possible to avoid a famine storm and the collapse of the global food system," he stressed. Russia and Ukraine are both considered the world's "barns". In total, "45 African and least developed countries import at least a third of their grain from Ukraine or Russia; 18 of these countries import at least 50%. This includes countries such as Burkina Faso, Egypt, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Lebanon, Libya. , Somalia, Sudan and Yemen," said Guterres, calling for an end to hostilities once again. Meanwhile, Martin Griffiths, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, announced the release of $40 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) for Ukraine. The war in the country has displaced more than 2 million people, "but many are unable to leave their homes due to heavy fighting in cities such as Mariupol, Kharkov and kyiv," said a statement from his office, which listed "24 attacks on sanitation facilities." " to date.
"In the face of this bleak and deteriorating crisis, we are mobilizing a massive relief effort," he said. That $40 million "is critical to starting operations," he said, adding that "quick and flexible financing can make a difference."