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Burundi starvation warning

BBS News, Friday 5 November 1999 Published at 15:49 GMT

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation says hundreds of thousands of people in Burundi are at risk of starvation following the recent upsurge of violence.

The organisation said renewed fighting in rural areas in the past two months had displaced 300,000 people.

The UN body said 800,000 people were now living in refugee camps run by the government, and that camp conditions were extremely poor.

Last month, the UN supsended almost all aid to areas outside the Burundian capital, Bujumbura, after two aid workers were killed.

Rebels from the Hutu majority have been fighting the Tutsi-led government and army in Burundi for the past six years.

The FAO called for an international efforts to reduce the violence to enable aid deliveries to resume.

A UN delegation is currently touring various African countries in the hope of devising a new peace plan for Burundi.

This follows the death of former Tanzanian President Julius Nyerere, who led earlier mediation efforts to end the war, which has has killed more than 200,000 people.