ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — A government official says an estimated 4.5 million Ethiopians are in need of food assistance, an increase of 40 percent.
Ethiopia's state minister of agriculture, Mitiku Kassa, said Monday that nearly $400 million is needed to fill the country's food gap. He says Ethiopia needs to distribute 380 metric tons of food.
A drought centered in the triangle where Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia meet has sent tens of thousands of people pouring into refugee camps in search of food.
Jason Frasier, the director of the U.S. government aid mission in Ethiopia, said U.S. officials are concerned that the severity of the drought is being underestimated.