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UNICEF: 9 out of 10 children in Gaza experiencing severe food poverty

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) warned Wednesday against severe child food poverty amid world crises, including in Gaza.

“Five rounds of data collected between December 2023 and April 2024 have consistently found that 9 out of 10 children in the Gaza Strip are experiencing severe food poverty, surviving on two or fewer food groups per day,” UNICEF said in a report.

It said months of hostilities and restrictions on humanitarian aid have collapsed food and health systems, resulting in “catastrophic consequences” for children and their families in Gaza.

“This is evidence of the horrific impact the conflict and restrictions are having on families’ ability to meet children’s food needs – and the speed at which they place children at risk of life-threatening malnutrition,” it added.

The report also revealed that around 181 million children worldwide under 5 years of age are experiencing severe child food poverty, making them up to 50% more likely to experience wasting, a life-threatening form of malnutrition.

“Children living in severe food poverty are children living on the brink. Right now, that is the reality for millions of young children, and this can have an irreversible negative impact on their survival, growth, and brain development,” said UNICEF Executive Director Catherine Russell.



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