Jun 10, 2008

Aid Worker: "Everyone's starving" in Ethiopia

There is an excellent Associated Press article out today about the desperate situation in Ethiopia.

The food crisis is hitting every part of the world, and it is being felt the hardest in the areas that were already on the edge of survival.

In Ethiopia, it is not just children, the elderly, or the poor who are suffering. According to aid workers, starvation is hitting just about everyone.

Yesterday I posted an article about the world famine that we are starting to experience:


What follows is an excerpt form the AP article about Ethiopia, and it shows that things are getting worse than most would have imagined:



SHASHAMANE, Ethiopia (AP) -- Like so many other victims of Ethiopia's hunger crisis, Usheto Beriso weighs just half what he should. He is always cold and swaddled in a blanket. His limbs are stick-thin.

But Usheto is not the typical face of Ethiopia's chronic food problems, the scrawny baby or the ailing toddler. At 55 years old, he is among a growing number of adults and older children -- traditionally less vulnerable groups -- who have been stricken by severe hunger because of poor rains and recent crop failure in southern Ethiopia, health workers say.

"To see adults in this condition, it's a very serious situation," nurse Mieke Steenssens, a volunteer with Doctors Without Borders, told The Associated Press as she registered the 5-foot, 4-inch Usheto's weight at just 73 pounds (33 kilograms).

Aid groups say the older victims suggest an escalation in the crisis in Ethiopia, a country that drew international attention in 1984 when a famine compounded by communist policies killed some 1 million people.

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