Imam Khalid Latif is blogging his reflections during the month of Ramadan, featured daily on HuffPost Religion. He cites IRUSA’s Adnan Ansari, who is on the ground in Somalia, and provides a link to IRUSA.org for those interested in donating to the cause.
Here’s an excerpt from Imam Latif’s article:
“It’s shocking to me how many people have no idea what is happening in Somalia right now. Famine, drought and conflict have put almost 3.6 million people at risk of starvation. In the last month alone, 29,000 children have died and according to U.N. Under Secretary General Valerie Amos, and it is projected that up to 600,000 children may die. The Food and Agriculture Organization, also part of the U.N., stated that the famine will probably last until the end of the year and spread across most of the Southern part of Somalia in the next month or so.
Adnan Ansari, the current Vice President of Programs for Islamic Relief USA, wrote in a first-hand account, ‘Mogadishu is also officially declared to have catastrophic famine conditions. With the majority of the children being malnourished, the ribs on every child’s chest can be counted. Smiles are rare; sighs and wails are commonly heard. People looked at us without any expectation. It seems as though people know that they will have to survive on their own or welcome death early as the only way out.
As a father closed the eyes of his two-year old child while she seemed to take her last breath, we tried to convince him to take her to the hospital. He insisted to let the suffering end. Even though we took the child to the clinic, only a few more breaths had remained–two hours later we found that the body was being prepared for burial.'”