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Vatican establishes diplomatic relations with Mauritania

December 9, 2016. The Vatican will establish diplomatic relations with Mauritania. This African country is an Islamic Republic extremely hostile towards Christians.
Vatican

Vatican launches new website for the Protection of Minors from sex abuse

December 6, 2016. The Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors (PCPM) has launched a website to provide the public with information about their mission: "the effective protection of minors and a commitment to ensure their human and spiritual development.”
Pope Francis

These are the names of the 17 new cardinals the pope appointed at the consistory

November 19, 2016. 13 of them are under the age of 80, and thus able to vote in a hypothetical conclave, and four of them are non-electors.

Agencies ramping up Syria aid efforts amid 'massive' drop in agricultural production

2013-02-10

According to the report, agriculture, the livelihood for 8 million Syrians, half of the entire population, has seen a dramatic decline during the past year, as a civil war rages on around the country.

DOMINIQUE BURGEON
Director, FAO Emergency and Rehabilitation Division
"The World Food Programme as we speak is providing food assistance to a very large number, currently I think they are reaching 1.5 million people but that is increasing by the day.”

ERTHARIN COUSIN
Executive Director, UN World Food Programme
"This is a challenge that the entire global community must work together to address. No child should go hungry because of the conflict in Syria.”

The FAO report says farmers in Syria are unable to plant, irrigate or harvest their crops, causing a "massive drop” in output. The result not only affects their livelihoods, but also reduces the food supply for surrounding communities, causing shortages or a spike in prices. Officials say the poorest people are always the worst affected.

The crisis, already so severe, has forced hundreds of thousands of people to flee to neighboring countries. That adds to the difficulty for aid agencies to deliver the help.

DOMINIQUE BURGEON
Director, FAO Emergency and Rehabilitation Division
"Unfortunately we cannot predict how long this situation will last but it is clear that the longer it will last the longer it will take for the country to recover.”

The recovery efforts are well under way. The World Food Programme continues to feed 1.5 million people inside the country. By June of this year, they'll reach an additional one million Syrian refugees in neighboring countries.

Meanwhile, the FAO will distribute seeds, fertilizers and irrigation tools to farmers to help them start over.

And while both UN agencies operate at the national government levels, dozens of other aid groups like Caritas Lebanon or Caritas Jordan are also on the ground in Syria, doing their part to alleviate the suffering of a deeply troubled population.


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