The coronavirus pandemic is worsening the humanitarian situation in the world's deadliest conflicts and threatens to unleash economic devastation that will intensify violence, United Nations diplomats and experts warn.
Covid-19 is hampering aid programs, diverting the attention and resources of major powers battling the deadly virus at home, and cutting remittances to already fragile, war-weary economies, they say.
Lockdowns are restricting the movements of envoys, peacekeeping troops and non-governmental agencies, hindering mediation efforts and impeding the distribution of desperately needed aid to increasingly vulnerable civilians.
"Famine is again on the horizon. Conflict is again escalating. The economy is again in tatters. Humanitarian agencies are again nearly broke. And then the new problems -- COVID-19 is spreading out of control," UN relief chief Mark Lowcock said on Yemen last week.
The situation is more or less same for all the other conflict regions which include Syria, Libya. Experts are also watching with close concern Lebanon, currently mired in its worst economic crisis since its 1975-1990 civil war.