UN concern over Hamas-Israel war impact on food supply

AFP , Monday 9 Oct 2023

The UN's World Food Programme said Sunday it was "deeply concerned" about the impact of war between Israel and Hamas on civilians struggling to get essential food supplies.

Palestine refugees
Schools run by the UN for Palestine refugees have opened up as shelters. AFP


Almost 1,000 people have been killed since fighters from the Islamist group Hamas stormed across Gaza's border with Israel on Saturday, triggering gun battles with Israel, which also mounted air strikes on the besieged coastal enclave.

The Rome-based WFP in a statement said it was "deeply concerned about the rapidly deteriorating situation" in Israel and Palestinian territory and "the impact of this conflict on the affected populations".

It added: "As the conflict intensifies, civilians, including vulnerable children and families, face mounting challenges in accessing essential food supplies, with food distribution networks disrupted and food production severely hampered by hostilities."

The WFP is concerned about stocks in food shops and the impact of power cuts in the Gaza Strip, which already suffers from a chronic electricity deficit.

"Frequent electricity cuts bring the threat of food spoilage," said the WFP.

Referring to Gaza, which was hammered by Israeli air strikes on 800 targets ahead of what many fear may be a ground invasion, the statement said: "While most shops in the affected areas in Palestine currently maintain one month of food stocks, these risk being depleted swiftly as people buy up food in fear of a prolonged conflict".

The UN agency, which says it has stocks of food ready for distribution to people displaced and in shelters, called on "all parties to uphold the principles of humanitarian law".

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