Niger: MSF repeats call for rapid mobilisation of aid agencies to increase assistance in areas of acute malnutrition
BBC News: UN Niger aid plan 'risks lives' MSF says with almost a million people not yet fed, next month is too soon for the UN World Food Programme to end wide-scale distributions.
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Geneva/Zinder Tens of thousands of children in Niger still require immediate nutritional assistance, according to the international medical aid agency Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). A nutritional and retrospective mortality survey conducted by the group and its research affiliate, Epicentre, in the Zinder region this past August found one in five children suffering from malnutrition. The study revealed an even more critical situation for children less than 30 months old, with nearly one in three malnourished and 5.6% severely malnourished. Just last week, MSF medical teams admitted nearly 1,000 severely malnourished children for treatment in Zinder alone. Mortality rates in the area for children under the age of five has been 4.1 deaths/10,000 people/day - or more than double the emergency threshold - since the beginning of the crisis in January 2005. The survey also found that the mortality rate rose between April and August 2005, reaching 5.3 deaths/10,000 people/ day for this most recent period. Nearly 90% of the families also reported having no more food reserves left.
Christian Captier, General Director of MSF in Switzerland, currently in Zinder