India highlights its contribution to global food security

India highlights its contribution to global food security

NEW YORK: Highlighting the contribution India has made towards global food security, New Delhi on Thursday (local time) said that it is a basic minimum requirement, especially when the world is beset by the universal impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing conflicts.

Speaking at the UN Security Council ARRIA formula meeting on conflict and hunger, Sneha Dubey, India’s First Secretary highlighted that New Delhi has provided food aid to several countries including Myanmar, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Sudan and South Sudan.
She noted that in view of the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Afghanistan, India has decided to donate 50,000 metric tonnes of wheat.

“Similarly, India has continued its humanitarian support for Myanmar, including a grant of 10,000 tons of rice and wheat,” Dubey said.

Reiterating India’s commitment, she said that the country will continue working with all other member-states and International organisations, including the UN, to collectively strengthen global food security, including in conflict-affected regions.

“Food security, in itself, is not a driver of armed violence and conflict. It may, at best, precipitate or exacerbate violence, depending upon a country’s level of development and the strength of its political institutions,” the First Secretary said.

She also asserted that armed conflict and terrorism combined with extreme weather conditions, food price volatility, political exclusion and economic shocks can devastate any fragile State, further eroding economic growth consequently increasing the threat of famine.

“We would like to underscore that “White Notes” on famine risk in conflict situations should be objective and factual, and need not become political tools. We are unfortunately witnessing an increasing tendency to politicize humanitarian situations,” India said at the ARRIA formula meeting.

Welcoming Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’s call for humanitarian assistance from food export restrictions with immediate effect, India said that the food security challenges emanating from the Ukraine conflict require us to respond creatively.

“The growing shortages can only be addressed by going beyond the constraints that bind us presently,” the country noted.

Meanwhile, India remains strongly committed to the cause of global food security and has contributed to the UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) and United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) in response to the various humanitarian crises over the years.

“Our spearheading of the UN General Assembly resolution for declaring the year -2023 as the “International Years of Millets” was aimed at addressing the food security challenges,” India’s First Secretary said. (ANI)