Let me begin by expressing our deep appreciation to OCHA, FAO and WFP for sharing their insights.
It is with great concern we have heard OCHA’s update on food insecurity in Ethiopia, Northeast Nigeria, South-Sudan, and Yemen due to conflict and violence.
We are also alarmed by the levels of food insecurity in Somalia and Afghanistan.
The OCHA white note has clearly outlined conflict as a driver of food insecurity, and underlines the importance of the early warning mechanism foreseen in Resolution 2417.
It is evident this Council has a preventive role to play in line with resolution 2417- through breaking the cycle of armed conflict and hunger, by stepping up our efforts to avert conflicts in the first place.
The Council must also speak loudly and clearly against violations of international humanitarian law, and for accountability- including for the obstruction of humanitarian assistance, and the use of starvation as a method of warfare.
One striking situation that requires the Council’s attention is the conflict dynamic in the Horn of Africa.
For several years, civilians in this region have experienced widespread food insecurity due to conflict and violence.
And now the renewed fighting in Tigray has serious and immediate consequences for the region.
This Council should urgently encourage and support the “good offices” of the African Union and the UN towards an immediate cease-fire, and the start of talks.
We appreciate and support the general and context specific recommendations outlined in the OCHA white note.
We also want to highlight the gendered impact of conflict induced food insecurity- including for malnourished women and children.
Accordingly, in response, women must have an active role in the prevention of food insecurity and conflict; as well as in the design and implementation of peacebuilding efforts and humanitarian responses.
Global food insecurity has been exacerbated by Russia’s illegal war against Ukraine- with far reaching consequences for millions of people.
And we again commend the Secretary-General for his efforts towards the Black Sea Grain Initiative.
We must make sure that the most vulnerable benefit from it.
This global food crisis requires us to step up funding. And scale up our investments in food production and resilience- both in and outside conflict zones.
We must also respond in a way that reduces future risks- by ensuring better interaction between humanitarian, development, and peace efforts.
And addressing climate change as a driver of further conflict.
Norway, accordingly, has increased our own funding. And our new food security strategy focuses on small scale food producers, and climate resilience.
We appreciate the clear recommendation in the OCHA white note on the role of regional organizations.
We must strengthen partnerships with the African Union, and other regional organizations as a vital part of our efforts to prevent both conflict and food insecurity.