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While the North starves...

Sri Lanka is “exploring the possibility” of selling excess food that has been produced to the World Food Programme and other global markets under a Presidential directive, the Sunday Times reports.

Finance Ministry Secretary Dr. P.B. Jayasundara said,

"For over 30 years the WFP has fed our internally displaced people but now there is no longer any need for that. However, even though Sri Lanka has no internally displaced there are many around the world. We are in the process of identifying two districts that can provide rice exports to the WFP."

Meanwhile, just days ago, the very same World Food Programme that Sri Lanka is looking to supply, had this to say about the Northern province,

Over 60 percent of households in the Northern Province are food-insecure, and lack the income generation and food-production capacity to secure basic needs."

A recent WFP survey also revealed that around half the 1.1 million people living in the Northern Province were in debt, owing on average six months' income, much of it incurred in buying food.

The latest WFP assessment of the Northern Province also found that half the households there live on less than $1 a day.

See our earlier post: ‘Northern Province assistance faces over $200 million shortfall – UN’ (Oct 2011)

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