$3.9 billion pledged to prevent E. Africa famines

Published April 5, 2012 2:45PM (EDT)

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — International donors say they won't allow a repeat of last year's Horn of Africa famine and are gearing up to spend billions of dollars on programs to let communities withstand cyclical droughts.

International donors have pledged to spend $3.9 billion on programs like crop resiliency over the next five years, said Raj Shah, the head of the U.S. aid arm known as USAID.

The British government estimates that between 50,000 and 100,000 died in last year's famine in Somalia and drought in Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda and Djibouti.

Shah said Wednesday that it costs less to help people in the Horn of Africa withstand drought than it is to distribute aid during a crisis.

By Salon Staff

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