On Friday, the World Food Programme (WFP) was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for feeding millions of people from Yemen to North Korea, during the coronavirus pandemic
This is the 12th time the Peace Prize has gone to the UN or one of its agencies. The prize consists of a gold medal, a diploma and a cheque for 10 million Swedish kronor (950,000 euros, $1.1 million).
The ceremony which took place in Oslo, honored the efforts of the United Nations agency for its efforts in combating hunger and bettering conditions for peace in conflict-affected areas as well as being a driving force in efforts to prevent the use of hunger as a weapon of war and conflict.
Nobel committee chairwoman Berit Reiss-Andersen said “this year’s award, turns the eyes of the world towards the millions of people who suffer from or face the threat of hunger.”
Since the start of the pandemic, the world outlook on life has grown even bleaker this year due to earnings losses, increase in food prices and disrupted supply chains. Despite the pandemic, the UN agency is focused on achieving its goal of eradicating hunger by 2030.
According to the WFP, war can be caused by hunger, but hunger is also a consequence of war, with people living in areas of conflict three times more likely to be undernourished than those living in countries at peace. However, the Nobel committee says the coronavirus pandemic has contributed to a strong upsurge in the number of victims of hunger in the world.
“In countries such as Yemen, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Nigeria, South Sudan and Burkina Faso, the combination of violent conflict and the pandemic has led to a dramatic rise in the number of people living on the brink of starvation,” it said.
Report published by the UN in July shows the global recession caused by the virus risks pushing an additional 83 to 132 million people into hunger.