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06.05.2019 | Press Release

The Sahel Region Needs Security and Development

Chancellor Merkel Travels to Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger.

Zwei Männer versuchen eine Kuh zum Weitergehen zu bewegen.
In Koukou, Rion Terra, Niger, two men try to get an old and weak cow to move on. © Brockmann/Welthungerhilfe

Bonn / Berlin, 2/5/2019 German Chancellor Angela Merkel is currently travelling to Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger. Welthungerhilfe welcomes the importance that the German Chancellor attaches to the Sahel, as the region threatens to be engulfed by one of the largest humanitarian disasters in the world. 33 million people across the region do not have enough to eat.

“Climate change, hunger, poverty and a lack of prospects for young people in particular are dangerous possible causes of conflict in the Sahel. The response from the international community so far has concentrated too much on the military side. However, development and humanitarian approaches should not be subordinate to security policy. This will not solve the underlying structural causes of conflicts. Financial resources for military programmes should not be built up at the expense of humanitarian and development programmes”, stresses Mathias Mogge, General Secretary of Welthungerhilfe.

Welthungerhilfe is active in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger, where it supported 24 projects in 2017 alone. The organisation reached around 115,000 people in Niger, around 117,000 in Mali, and 111,000 in Burkina Faso. “Our work in the Sahel has become increasingly dangerous over recent years, nevertheless, we are trying to help people particularly in remote areas away from the capitals", says Mogge.

Welthungerhilfe is one of the largest private aid organisations in Germany; politically independent and non-denominational. It is fighting for “Zero Hunger by 2030”. Since it was founded in 1962, more than 8,900 overseas projects in 70 countries have been supported with 3.53 billion euros. Welthungerhilfe works on the principle of empowering people to help themselves: from fast disaster relief to reconstruction and long-term development cooperation projects with national and international partner organisations.

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