The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has started providing vital food assistance to families who have been displaced by clashes between armed groups in western Libya’s Sabratha. The area has recently experienced an upsurge of conflict.
Since the end of September, more than 15,000 people have moved to nearby cities and quieter areas of Sabratha city.
“With the help of our Libyan partners on the ground, WFP is delivering enough food this week to feed 1,500 people who have been severely affected by fighting,” says WFP Libya Country Director, Richard Ragan.
WFP is providing food assistance to almost 300 families, with each ration offering a family of five a month’s supply of rice, pasta, wheat flour, chickpeas, vegetable oil, sugar and tomato paste.
“Because of the conflict, many of the normal systems that people depend on to meet their daily needs have ceased to function,” says Ragan. “WFPs support gives hope to those most in need and offers life-saving food assistance during a period when help is most urgently needed.”
In 2017, WFP aims to assist 175,000 Libyans whose food insecurity means they do not know where their next meal is coming from. Priority is being given to the most vulnerable families, especially internally displaced people, returnees and refugees, as well as households headed by unemployed women.
The humanitarian situation in Libya continues to deteriorate due to ongoing conflict, political instability, and the disruption of markets and local food production, all of which affect families’ livelihoods and their ability to meet basic needs, including food.
WFP – dependent entirely on voluntary contributions from governments, companies and individuals – urgently requires US$9.2 million to continue its food assistance operations in Libya for the next six months.