Food prices have risen substantially in the region, pushing many moderately poor households over the edge, [Elisabeth Byrs, spokeswoman of the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, told a media briefing].The drought, combined with unrest, is resulting in an increased number in refugees, many of whom are malnourished. And because the global economy is fubared at the moment: "UN humanitarian appeals for Somalia and Kenya, each about $525 million, are barely 50 percent funded, while a $30 million appeal for Djibouti is just 30 percent funded."
A U.N. map of food security in the eastern Horn of Africa shows large swathes of central Kenya and Somalia in the "emergency" category, one phase before what the U.N. classifies as catastrophe/famine -- the fifth and worst category.
Child malnutrition rates in the worst affected areas are more than double the emergency threshold of 15 percent and are expected to rise further, Byrs said.
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