Food security linked to peace in the Sahel: FAO chief

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FAO is making improved seeds available for farmers in Burkina Faso

Improving food security in the Sahel will contribute to peace and stability in the region.

The view was expressed by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Director-General José Graziano da Silva during an address to a meeting on the Sahel situation.

He says “Investing in food security in the Sahel is also an investment in a peaceful and more stable future,” adding that “There is a clear linkage between hunger and conflict; food security and peace in Africa.

Graziano da Silva says "In the Sahel, we are seeing how food insecurity, hunger, and the dispute over natural resources cause conflicts. Hunger can both trigger conflicts and be a result of conflict".

The Director-General noted that over one billion euro has been mobilized for the Sahel by the international community this year, “and we are glad to see that famine has been averted.”

But he says more needs to be done, adding that "it is essential to step up support and also combine short-term humanitarian responses with longer-term development actions.”

Graziano da Silva says he believes there is the political will to end hunger in the Sahel, noting that what he saw during a recent trip to Niger was encouraging and convinced him that there is hope; that there is political will to reverse the negative trends leading to food insecurity in the region.

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration: 1’12″

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