The United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) says peace is fundamental to reducing the number of hungry people in the world.
It’s Director-General, José Graziano da Silva made this known yesterday June 4, while addressing FAO executives and Council members at the ongoing 159 session in Rome, Italy.
In his opening address, Graziano da Silva stressed the role of wars and conflict as drivers of global hunger, while lamenting an increase in military spending.
The Director-General noted that, recent figures show that after almost a decade of decline, the number of people affected by hunger in the world has started to increase, with 815 million chronically undernourished in 2016.
He added that, in 2017, some 124 million required life and livelihoods saving support to avoid the risk of drifting in a famine situation compared with 108 million in 2016.
Reiterating the need for peace, Graziano da Silva said: “Countries should bear in mind that sustained peace and the end of conflicts are fundamental to bring the numbers of hunger down again.
“As head of a UN organization, allow me to say that it is indeed very frustrating to see that FAO’s regular budget has been flat for the last seven years, while global military expenditure continues to increase.”
According to the DG, member countries have expressed their satisfaction towards FAO’s consistent and inexorable actions to eradicate hunger by 2030, through its Sustainable Development Goals (SDG2).
Graziano da Silva stated: “The Regional Conferences underlined the need for continuity in the strategic direction of the Organization, recognizing that FAO has been more efficient and effective.
“Let me stress that FAO can continue to be highly committed to increasing efficiency and giving value for money. But please bear in mind that it will be difficult to do more and more with less and less resources in our regular budget.”