JUBA, Nov. 18 (Xinhua) -- The United Nations refugee agency, UNHCR, on Friday urged international support for humanitarian efforts in South Sudan in the wake of historic floods that for four years in a row have left nearly one million people in desperate need of assistance.
Raouf Mazou, UNHCR Assistant High Commissioner for Operations said the world should intensify support to provide South Sudan with climate-adapted development assistance to help it move away from dependency on humanitarian aid.
Mazou said people who suffered from years of conflict are now at the frontlines of a climate crisis that has stripped them off the means to support themselves.
"This cycle must be broken, and we appeal to donors to make more resources available so that we can step up aid," Mazou said in a statement issued in Juba, the capital of South Sudan, after concluding a five-day visit to the country.
More than 900,000 people have been directly impacted as waters have swept away homes and livestock, forced thousands to flee, and inundated large swathes of farmland, worsening an already dire food emergency, according to the UN.
Mazou who visited Bentiu, in the north and hard hit by the floods, witnessed local initiatives aimed at protecting the population from the impact of flooding.
He said the UNHCR has stepped up its support of South Sudan's efforts to find solutions for the forcibly displaced as well as those who are choosing to return home to rebuild their lives.
According to the UNHCR, South Sudan which hosts over 340,000 refugees, mainly from Sudan has received over 600,000 refugee returnees from neighboring countries since 2018.
South Sudan is one of UNHCR's most underfunded crises having received less than half of the 214.8 million U.S. dollars needed this year, according to the UNHCR. ■