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UN Issues Critical Food Shortage Warning for Crisis-Affected Sri Lanka

The number of people in need of immediate humanitarian assistance has quadrupled to 3.4 million, according to the United Nations, which has issued a warning about a rising food crisis in impoverished Sri Lanka. 

Out of Sri Lanka's 22 million people, 1.7 million were assessed by UN agencies to need assistance in June. 

According to a joint statement from the UN agencies in Colombo, they have gathered $79 million to help feed the hungry, but given the rising population of the poor, they still need an extra $70 million.


The report said that "owing to two seasons of poor crops, foreign exchange shortages, and decreasing household purchasing power, food insecurity in Sri Lanka has expanded significantly."

Since gaining independence from Britain in 1948, Sri Lanka has been dealing with its biggest economic crisis, which includes rampant inflation, power outages, and fuel shortages. 


The nation fell behind on its $51 billion external debt in the middle of April, and now it is negotiating a $2.9 billion rescue with the IMF.

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa was overthrown in July after months of demonstrations protesting inflated prices and drug and food shortages. 


According to the UN, the updated plan intends to feed 2.1 million people, including expectant women and schoolchildren, and to help 1.5 million farmers and fishermen sustain their livelihoods.

The poverty rate in the country of South Asia has increased from 13.1 percent to 25.6 percent this year, according to the report.


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