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Starving Kenyans Bind Stomachs in Desperate Bid to Stave Off Hunger

ActionAid has today warned that women in Kenya are resorting to the life-threatening practice of binding their stomachs as hunger in East Africa escalates.  The revelation comes as the UN announces that 11 million people have been affected by one of the worst droughts in 60 years.

The women say that the binding – done with either cloth or rope – helps them to stave of hunger as they wait for food.  Whilst the practice has been happening for generations, it has become more widespread as the drought has worsened.

Zippora Mbungo, an 86 year-old farmer from Makima in Kenya says:

"Women discovered the rope tying trick after we experienced frequent periods of drought and crop failure in our region. Tying helps us to walk and work even when we are starving.