SANTIAGO, April 23 (Xinhua) -- The regional office of the United Nations (UN) Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on Tuesday presented its plan to fight poverty and hunger in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The strategy, named "100 Territories Free of Poverty and Hunger," seeks to work with local governments to identify critical points that require urgent attention in the region.
The first phase of the strategy focuses on five priority countries, namely Colombia, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador and the Dominican Republic, the FAO said.
The 10-year plan foresees work with governments in the creation of a coalition of important social partners from the private sector, academia and the international community.
The UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and the FAO have identified close to 2,000 municipalities in 14 countries within the region that have more than 40 million people living in extreme poverty and suffering from food insecurity.
"We are talking about municipalities in countries like Colombia, Peru, the Dominican Republic or Brazil that have made significant advances in their development, in whose forgotten territories there are still children suffering from hunger," said Julio Berdegue, FAO regional representative.
"These backward territories are like places stuck in time. In addition, in the countries with the biggest advances there are rural territories that have been left behind, where people live in social conditions which resemble those of 50 years ago," he said.
Half of these people, the number of which is 20.9 million, live in the countryside, while the rest live in towns and small cities. Nearly one in five are indigenous or of African descent.
Data showed that the population of these backward territories represents between 4 and 16 percent of the total population, the FAO said.