WFP Struggles to Provide Food for Refugees in Chad as Funds Deplete

Harare — Food aid to 1.4 million people in Chad, including recently arrived refugees from conflict in Sudan’s Darfur region, will stop in January 2024 due to a lack of sponsorship, according to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP).

The WFP announced in a statement on November 21, that it would stop providing relief to internally displaced persons and refugees from Nigeria, the Central African Republic, and Cameroon as of December 2023 due to financial difficulties and an increase in humanitarian needs.From January 2024, the suspension will be extended to 1.4 million people across Chad – including new arrivals from Sudan who will not receive food as they flee across the border,” read the report.

Since fighting broke out between the Sudanese army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) seven months ago, over 540,000 refugees fled from Sudan into Chad, according to the International Organization for Migration. Many have left West Darfur, where mass massacres and racially motivated violence flared up again in October 2023 in the state capital, el-Geneina, forcing hundreds more people to flee.

“In just the last six months of conflict in Sudan, as many refugees have fled into Chad as had crossed the border in the preceding 20 years starting from the outbreak of the Darfur crisis in 2003. This brings the total number of refugees in Chad to over a million, making the country host to one of the largest and fastest-growing refugee populations in the whole African continent, WFP said.

WFP urgently needs U.S.$185 million to guarantee that the crisis-affected communities of Chad get help for the next six months.

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