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'Trees and leaves' the last food in stricken Sudan state: UN

Published on Jan 9, 2013 6:08 AM

UNITED NATIONS (AFP) - Hundreds of thousands of people in Sudan's conflict-stricken South Kordofan are surviving on roots and leaves, a top UN official told the UN Security Council on Tuesday.

About 700,000 people in South Kordofan and neighboring Blue Nile states face "truly appalling" conditions while the Sudan government and rebels block access to international aid workers, UN humanitarian operations director John Ging said.

The conflict in the two states is said to be worsening with the Khartoum government stepping up aerial bombardments on rebel areas, according to UN officials and diplomats.

Mr Ging told the council that most people in rebel-held areas of South Kordofan are surviving on "trees and leaves," according to diplomats in the closed meeting.

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