Aid pledge for drought victims in Horn of Africa

The Government has pledged £52.25m in emergency aid for victims of the drought in the Horn of Afirca.

International Development Secretary Andrew Mitchell is to visit Kenya over the crisis in the region, brought on by failed rains and soaring food prices.

He said the funds would go towards support for victims in Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia.

Tens of thousands of people have arrived in Kenya in recent weeks in search of food and shelter.

Many of them are staying in the Dadaab camps, where part of the Government funds will be used to provide clean drinking water and health care.

Kenya is struggling with its own food crisis, however, and aid will go to around 300,000 Kenyans.

Mr Mitchell said the international community needed to "do more".

"People across Britain have responded with great generosity to appeals by British NGOs working in the Horn of Africa," he said.

"But the situation is getting worse - and is particularly devastating in Somalia, where families already have to cope with living in one of the most insecure countries in the world.

"More than 3,000 people every day are fleeing over the borders to Ethiopia and Kenya, many of them arriving with starving children."

Some areas are experiencing their driest conditions in 60 years. The World Food Programme estimates that more than 10 million are in need of aid across the region.

Christian Aid and Tearfund are among the Christian charities responding to the crisis.

They are also part of the DEC, which has raised £13m since the launch of its appeal.