Authors: Joshua Cohan
(WASHINGTON) -- U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Thursday urged the international community to do more to support famine relief in the Horn of Africa, and warned that time is running out.
"We must remember that time is not on our side. Every minute, more people -- mostly women and mostly children -- are dying. They're becoming sick. They are fleeing their homes. We must respond. We need to rise to the level of this emergency by acting smarter and faster than we have before, to achieve both short-term relief and long-term progress," she said in a speech to the International Food Policy Research Institute.
"I came today to make sure that in my own country and beyond, people we know we have a crisis, and we must respond. We must try to save those lives that are being lost in those brutal marches to try to get to safety," she said.
Clinton also announced an additional $17 million in famine relief. She acknowledged that fiscal restraints make such a request more difficult, but said it was important.
"I certainly understand the difficult budget times we are living through, but we have to rededicate ourselves to doing development differently, as we said we would," she said.
Clinton used much of her speech to urge countries and experts to find a way to ensure this is the last famine.
"This cycle is not inevitable," she said. "A hunger crisis is not solely an act of God: It is a complex problem of infrastructure, governance, markets, education. These are things we can shape and strengthen."
She pushed back against those who said this current crisis must be solved first, saying it could provide the perfect opportunity to learn.
"Let's use this opportunity to make very clear what more we need to do together to try to avoid this happening again," Clinton said.
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