FEWSNET report: 260,000 people died in the Somalia famine

Published: 1st May 2013

Responding to Thursday's FEWSNET report that estimates 260,000 people died in the Somalia 2010/11 famine, Oxfam's Country Director for Somalia, Senait Gebregziabher said:

"Famines are not natural phenomena, they are catastrophic political failures. The world was too slow to respond to stark warnings of drought, exacerbated by conflict in Somalia and people paid with their lives. These deaths could and should have been prevented, and such a shocking death toll must never be allowed to happen again.

"Next week world leaders meeting at the Somalia 2013 Conference in London must take steps to ensure that this was Somalia’s last famine. They must invest in long-term development, creating jobs, supporting farmers and pastoralists and ensuring trained, accountable security forces.

"It is crucial that women and men from across Somalia are involved in a bottom up process to determine the country's future. Top down "solutions" don't work. The country is crying out for just and sustainable peace, and the new Government must grab this moment to secure it."

Contact information

Geno Teofilo, Media Lead, Oxfam in Somalia

Related links

Oxfam's response to the 2011-2012 East Africa food crisis