Congresswoman Lee Statement on the Declaration of Famine in South Sudan

Washington, D.C. - Congresswoman Barbara Lee released the following statement regarding the United Nation’s declaration of famine in South Sudan:

“I am gravely concerned by the famine in South Sudan. Amid the chaos and confusion around this urgent disaster, one thing is clear: this crisis could have been prevented.

Earlier this week, the United Nations Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET) formally declared that a famine is growing in Unity State in South Sudan. The UN estimates that 4.9 million people are on the verge of starvation in the country.

“The fighting and violence in South Sudan has displaced 1.5 million people from their homes, driven the South Sudanese people into famine and threatens the country’s independence. I call on President Kiir to take immediate action to allow the flow of humanitarian aid to those in need. As a member of the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Subcommittee and Co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Sudan and South Sudan, I call on my colleagues in Congress and donors around the world to increase funding to the World Food Programme, UNICEF, and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) to save lives and support the people of South Sudan.”