UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has warned against the repercussions of Russia’s war in Ukraine, which could result in “a hurricane of famine” in many countries.
Halting agricultural production in Ukraine and Russia due to the conflict will hit “the poorest the hardest and sow seeds of political instability and unrest around the world,” Guterres told reporters in New York. “This war affects much more than Ukraine,” he added.
“Grain prices have already exceeded those of the early Arab Spring and food riots of 2007-2008,” he said, adding that the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization’s World Food Price Index Agriculture (FAO) “is at its highest level ever recorded.”
“We must do everything possible to avoid a famine hurricane and the collapse of the global food system,” Guterres stressed.
Russia and Ukraine are both considered “the grain barn” of the world.
In total, “45 African and least developed countries import at least a third of their wheat to Ukraine or Russia; 18 of these countries import at least 50%. This includes countries like Burkina Faso, Egypt, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen,” said Guterres, who again called for a quick end to hostilities.
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