Hours before the opening of the World Summit on Food Security, FAO Director-General Jacques Diouf began a 24 hour hunger strike to call for action to end the scourge of hunger and in solidarity with the one billion humans who suffer chronic malnutrition.
He called on “people of goodwill everywhere” to join him in a worldwide hunger strike. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has announced he would join the strike on Sunday.
Spotlighting his initiative Diouf began his fast at 8 p.m., Nov 13 in the lobby of FAO headquarters in Rome, where he also spent the night. He told reporters, “I hope that through these gestures we will raise awareness, and build pressure from public opinion to ensure that those who can change this situation are able to do so.”
In a separate initiative, Diouf earlier this week launched a global online petition to end hunger. Visitors to www.1billionhungry.org can register their agreement that ending hunger and malnutrition should be the world’s number one priority.