UN assists flood victims in Niger

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Niger floods (Idrissa Conteh/OCHA) (2012 file photo)

United Nations agencies and their humanitarian partners are assisting the government of Niger in providing emergency relief to more than 15,000 people whose communities were flooded.

The UN Humanitarian Affairs office (OCHA) reports that more than 90 tonnes of food have been distributed to people in south-east Niger who were  affected when the Komadougou River burst its banks.

OCHA spokesperson Jens Laerke told reporters in Geneva on Tuesday that seasonal flooding, which had begun a month earlier, caught locals and authorities by surprise as the river had risen to an unprecedented level.

"The flooding has also affected the transport systems and has paralysed local trade, which is an important source of income for people in the border area. Authorities report an increase of food imports from neighbouring Nigeria, but prices had gone up dramatically.” (14″)

OCHA says the flooding is continuing and at least 20 more villages are at risk. The long-term food security situation is also a concern as farmland is also under water.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration:  1’05″

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