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80,000 children under age five suffering from acute hunger in Myanmar: UN

The report from the UN agency was based on an assessment of villages in Rakhine state

IANS  |  Yangon 

Source: Shutterstock)
Source: Shutterstock)

Over 80,000 children under the age of five living in Muslim-majority areas of western are "wasting" and will need treatment for acute malnutrition over the next year, the World Programme (WFP) warned in a report on Monday.

The report from the agency was based on an assessment of villages in state, where some 75,000 stateless Muslim people have fled a bloody army crackdown, reports the Guardian.

Those who remain are now reeling from a crisis, with WFP finding one-third of homes are experiencing extreme deprivation in Maungdaw, one district particularly affected by the violence. This includes episodes of no in the house or not eating for 24 hours.

No children under the age of two met minimum adequate diet requirements, the assessment found, while 225,000 people need humanitarian assistance.

"It is estimated that 80,500 children under the age of five are expected to be in need of treatment for acute malnutrition over the next twelve months," the WFP report said.

A WFP spokesperson in said this "wasting" -- condition of rapid weight lose that can become fatal -- impairs the functioning of the immune system.

"The survey has confirmed a worsening of the security situation in already highly vulnerable areas following the security incidents and ensuing violence in late 2016," the Guardian quoted the WFP report as saying.

Last October, militant attacks on border police sparked army retaliation in which government forces have used helicopters to attack villages.

The WFP assessment found that in area affected by the violence, nearly half of the markets were not or only partially functioning.

"prices were highly volatile, and supply of affordable dried fish, a main source of proteins for the population, was scarce," the report added.

--IANS

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