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Swiss help combat hunger in Niger

The non-governmental organisation Swissaid has launched an emergency relief programme to provide food for around 10,000 people in Niger.

The organisation said six million people were threatened by famine in the west African country and the “situation is dramatic”.

The programme will provide 475 tons of cereals for distribution in nine villages. This is enough millet, maize and sorghum to feed 10,000 people for the next six months, until the next harvest.

The relief effort will cost up to SFr340,000 ($375,000), most of which will be financed jointly by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and the Swiss Solidarity charity.

Irregular rainfall in recent years and a drought in 2010 have affected food supplies in Niger and reserves in many villages could run out before the next harvest. Rising commodity prices have also made foodstuffs too expensive.

“If we want to avoid a disaster we need to act now,” the Swissaid office in Niger said.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR