The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has strongly condemned the looting of one of the agency’s logistics hubs in south-central Sudan.
The agency says the attack on its warehouses in El Obeid puts food assistance for 4.4 million conflict-affected people at risk.
WFP is working around the clock to scale up its operations in Sudan to reach millions of people whose lives have been put at risk by the violence that broke out in mid-April.
“This theft of humanitarian food and assets totally undermines these operations at a critical time for the people of Sudan. This must stop,” said WFP in a statement.
“Millions will be impacted by this attack. Initial reports suggest that food and nutrition supplies, as well as vehicles, fuel and generators have been looted in this incident.”
El Obeid hosts one of WFP’s largest logistics bases in Africa and serves as a vital lifeline for operations in Sudan and South Sudan.
WFP alone has so far recorded losses estimated at more than US$60 million since the violence broke out on April 15.
WFP is once again urging all parties to the conflict to ensure the safety and security of humanitarian assistance, aid workers and assets so that it can resume its life-saving mission.
About 2.5 million people in Sudan are expected to slip into hunger in the coming months because of the ongoing violence.
WFP says this would take acute food insecurity in Sudan to record levels, with more than 19 million people affected, which is equivalent to 40 percent of the population.