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Famine and Food Shortages: Africa

Volume 627: debated on Wednesday 12 July 2017

4. What steps her Department is taking to support people affected by (a) famine in South Sudan and (b) food shortages in Somalia and Burundi. (900366)

This year, we are providing a package of £276 million of humanitarian support to those countries, supplying food, shelter and water to those in desperate need.

What is the Department doing to encourage the Ugandan Government to engage fully in diplomatic efforts to bring the warring parties in South Sudan around the negotiating table?

The hon. Gentleman is right to raise that issue. The conflict in South Sudan is abhorrent, and I saw that first hand on my visit earlier this year. I have been pressing the Ugandan Government and other neighbours in the region. They need to step up and call out the appalling behaviour that we have been seeing in South Sudan with President Salva Kiir. The United Kingdom is doing everything it possibly can to ensure that that message is being heard.

I congratulate the Secretary of State and DFID on co-ordinating the aid effort in South Sudan with other countries. Does she agree that that is yet another example of where British taxpayers’ money is being wisely spent on keeping alive men, women and children who happen to share the same planet as us?

My hon. Friend is absolutely right. South Sudan is a man-made crisis that has killed thousands and forced almost 4 million people to flee their homes. UK aid is not only saving lives but making an enormous difference in a country dominated by war and conflict.