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WFP halts suspends flights in northern Mozambique

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The UN agency World Food Programme said it has suspended evacuation flights from northern Mozambique over security concerns, a day after French Energy giant Total shut its operations in the area.

Deadly attacks in the town of Palma, killed dozens and displaced tens of thousands.

The World Food program has been helping airlift the most vulnerable people affected by the violence to the capital, but since Friday has suspended the flights

"We managed to evacuate 380 people and people have also been arriving on ferries. The ferry journey takes 24 hours, so you can imagine, families who have arrived here and they have witnessed horrors." says Shelley Thakral of the World Food Programme.

"What do we know is that about 76% of the people we have managed to evacuate are women and children and obviously in Cabo Delgado itself there has been chronic malnutrition for many years and we already know that 950,000 people are food insecure. So, you can imagine the most critical thing is really that we reach the most vulnerable, " she further stressed.

On March 24, armed groups attacked Palma, a port city of 75,000 inhabitants, killing dozens of civilians, police and soldiers, WFP has evacuated 380 people, mainly women and children.

Some 23,000 others are still in the Afungi region, under military protection, according to the International Organization for Migration (IOM).