More than 1,200 children under age 5 have died in nine camps in war-scarred Sudan in the past five months because of a deadly combination of measles and malnutrition, the U.N.’s refugee agency said Tuesday.
The UNHCR said the deaths, between May 15 and Sept. 14, were documented by its teams in the While Nile province, where thousands of Sudanese have sheltered as fighting has raged for six months between rival generals, in the capital of Khartoum and elsewhere.
“Dozens of children are dying every day — a result of this devastating conflict and a lack of global attention,” said the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi.
The U.N. refugee agency said many displaced Sudanese are suffering from measles and malnutrition. Many refugees arriving in South Sudan and Ethiopia also have contracted measles and are malnourished. Acute malnutrition among children was reported in Chad, which hosts the largest number of Sudanese refugees since the conflict began.
The U.N. children’s agency has also warned that “many thousands of newborns” may die in Sudan by the end of the year because of a lack of access to treatment.