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A consignment of 1,100 tons of food aid destined for South Sudan has gone through Eritrea’s main port of Massawa.
The shipment of sorghum or dura is being brought by the World Food Program (WFP) and is the first in a decade to cross through the Eritrean port.
WFP officials say it is a “pilot shipment” to test Massawa’s efficiency and cost as a route for aid to South Sudan, compared with other routes through Sudan or Kenya.
The food is expected to be brought to South Sudan via Khartoum and Kosti.
The World Food Program (WFP) said more than 20 million people in the horn of Africa are in need of food aid due to heavy rain.
WFP pointed that the shortage of donations the Program is experiencing will make it difficult to feed people in some parts of Kenya, Somalia, Eritrea, and Djibouti.
It added that Ethiopia requested to convince Sudan and Somalia to allow it to use seaports to deliver humanitarian aid.
The Commissioner of Refugees in the Eastern State, Belal Ahmed Musa, has said the rate of refugees entering through the eastern borders of Kassala and Gadarif States has increased to one hundred (100) people per day. In press statements, Musa revealed that the refugees are mainly from Somalia, Eritrea and Ethiopia adding that the number reported to refugee's administration during last July has exceeded one thousand and four hundred (1400) people.
He further affirmed that the total number of refugees at Al-Shijeirab camp is over thirty three thousand refugees.