World Food Programme 28 October 2003
Marie Heuzé, the Director of the United Nations Information Service at Geneva, chaired the briefing which was attended by Antonella Notari (International Committee of the Red Cross); José Luis Díaz (Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights); Fadela Chaib (World Health Organization); Erica Meltzer (United Nations Conference for Trade and Development); Niurka Pineiro (International Organization for Migration); Christiane Berthiaume (World Food Programme) and Kris Janowski (High Commissioner for Refugees). Elizabeth Byrs of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs was present but had no announcements.
Christaine Berthiaume of the World Food Programme said that she had been in the occupied Palestinian territories last week. The situation in that region continued to deteriorate. A WFP study showed that more than 50 per cent of the inhabitants of the occupied territories lived below the poverty line. WFP was preparing a study on the “mechanisms of survival” and its results would be out at the end of November. Preliminary results showed that the people in the occupied Palestinian territories had run out of survival mechanisms. They had sold their jewellery, their land, their possessions like machinery, and now everything was gone. Children went to school, and then helped their families by working - right now they gathered green beans and olives. There were some 800,000 people who were not refugees who needed food aid in the occupied territories. The construction of the security wall was contributing to the food insecurity situation.
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