From a line-up in a refugee camp near the Congolese city of Goma, where the U.N. confirmed Sunday that armed men looted the camp and raped six women. How miraculously unfair that I get to live in a war-free country. (Phil Moore/AFP/Getty Images)
It’s too early to be cynical about the World Food Summit, which opens today. But it’s worth noting that Jacques Diouf, head of the UN’s Rome-based Food and Agriculture Organization, staged a 24-hour strike to bring attention to ” the world’s 1 billion chronically malnourished people … and put pressure on world leaders to do something about it,” reports Associated Press.
For a bit of irreverence, it’s also worth noting that AP reports Mr Diouf wore a trench over his pajamas [isn’t streetwear the officially uniform of hunger strikes, because you’re in public and no one looks dignified in pajamas?].
Here at home, an excellent piece in the Star this morning about the shift in hunger relief from international aid to long-term development, focused on the small farmer.
Writes Star columnist Olivia Ward :
The UN Food and Agriculture Organization said Sunday it had reached a deal with the Islamic Development Bank for $1 billion in funding to help develop agriculture in poor countries that belong to both organizations.
“This agreement comes at a critical moment, when the international community recognizes it has neglected agriculture for many years,” the Rome-based agency said. “Today, sustained investment in agriculture – especially smallholder agriculture – is acknowledged as the key to food security.”
Read full article here.
Photo: A vendor sprays water on vegetables to keep them fresh at a market in the eastern Indian city of Siliguri Oct. 22, 2009. RUPAK DE CHOWDHURI/REUTERS FILE PHOTO