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On Friday, the chief of the United Nations warned that the world faces a “catastrophe” because of the growing food shortage around the globe.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres revealed the war in Ukraine has added to the disruptions caused by climate change, the coronavirus pandemic, and inequality to produce an “unprecedented global hunger crisis” already affecting hundreds of millions of people.

“There is a real risk that multiple famines will be declared in 2022,” Guterres said.

“And 2023 could be even worse,” Guterres added.

Guterres said a global food shortage is possible since harvests across Asia, Africa, and the Americas could take a hit as farmers worldwide struggle to cope with rising fertilizer and energy prices.

To avoid a global food shortage, Guterres said U.N. negotiators were working on a deal that would enable Ukraine to export food via the Black Sea and let Russia bring food and fertilizer to world markets without restrictions.

He also appealed for debt relief for poor countries to help keep their economies afloat and for the private sector to help stabilize global food markets.

 

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