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Regional efforts to coordinate the food security protocols in the Middle East || Newspapers (Arabic)

22-01-2013

The joint FAO/WHO commission to coordinate the food security protocol in the Near East Region held its seventh meeting in Beirut.  The event was under the auspices of the Ministers of Public Health and Agriculture.  The event was also attended by the WHO EMRO regional director, Alaa Alouan, the FAO representative in Lebanon, Dr. Ali Moumen and representatives from 13 member countries in addition to representatives of NGOs and security forces.

The Minister of Agriculture said in his key note address that the role of this joint commission is to identify key regional issues and priorities in terms of food standards as well as coordinate regional food security protocols.  Minister Hajj Hassan further noted that developing research and ability to undertake risk assessments will require the coordination and pooling of efforts amongst governments as well as the private and NGOs sector.  Haj Hassan pointed out to the increasing risks in the region, notably poor investment and the impact of political insecurity, on regional food security.  According to the Minister, these factors have increased reliance on food imports which is growing and has reached 60% between 2011 and 2012.  This in itself is a worrying indicator.

Al Khalil noted the need for food security protocols which will include all food needs and its linkage to public health.  He pointed out to the status of global chaos at the level of dietary supplements and the need for setting up standards and restrictions at the national level.  This, he said, has now been addressed through the enactment of laws which monitor and record the imports and advertisement of dietary supplements.

Source: Al-Nahar, Al-Safir 22 January 2013

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