The head of the U.N.’s World Food Programme has issued an apocalyptic forecast about the year 2021, warning that a “catastrophic” humanitarian crisis looms in the months ahead, in what will be the worst year in over 100 years.
WFP chief David Beasley sounded the alarm at a United Nations General Assembly meeting on Friday.
He warned that over 270 million people are now “marching toward starvation” and that, in some countries, famine is “around the horizon.”
“2021 is literally going to be catastrophic, based on what we’re seeing at this stage in the game,” Beasley warned, adding that “because we’ve spent $19 trillion, that money may not, and will not most likely be available for 2021,” even as economic contractions have already begun.
Rt.com reports: While Beasley said the pandemic and government lockdown policies are driving the disturbing trends – stating the “cure could be worse than the disease because of the economic ripple effect” – he noted that “man-made conflict” also had a role to play, naming ongoing wars in Syria, Yemen, and South Sudan.
“We’ve got to end some of these wars. We’ve got to bring these wars to an end, so we can achieve the sustainable development goals that we so desire,” he said, dubbing the conflicts, health crisis and looming famine as “icebergs in front of the Titanic.”
In August, the WFP head said the number of people facing malnutrition could spike by 80 percent by the end of the year, warning of a “famine of biblical proportions” as millions risk starvation. UNICEF, meanwhile, predicted in May that, in 118 low and middle-income nations, 1.2 million children under the age of five could die in the following six months, pinning the surge on declining access to medical care “due to lockdowns, curfews and transport disruptions.”