In East Africa, a Vexing Trifecta of Challenges: COVID-19, Locusts and Floods

People wade through a flooded street in Beledweyne, central Somalia, May 17, 2020 (AP photo).
People wade through a flooded street in Beledweyne, central Somalia, May 17, 2020 (AP photo).

This time last year, countries in East Africa were leading the continent in economic growth. Now, much of that progress is at risk as the region faces a dangerous triple threat: torrential rain and flooding, voracious swarms of locusts and the coronavirus pandemic. The three crises are compounding each other’s impacts. Border closures that were put in place to slow the spread of COVID-19 have strained the supply of pesticides and other equipment to fight the locusts that have ravaged the region for months now. Food supplies that were already under siege from the pests have been further devastated by […]

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