Middle East

South Sudan faces 'unprecedented' level of hunger, UN says

FILE - In this Monday, July 25, 2016 file photo, a baby is lifted up as people queue for food distribution in a camp for the displaced at the United Nations base in Juba, South Sudan. The United Nations said Friday, Sept. 9, 2016 that hunger in South Sudan has reached "unprecedented" levels, with nearly 5 million people suffering from severe food insecurity. (AP Photo/Justin Lynch, File)

FILE - In this Monday, July 25, 2016 file photo, a baby is lifted up as people queue for food distribution in a camp for the displaced at the United Nations base in Juba, South Sudan. The United Nations said Friday, Sept. 9, 2016 that hunger in South Sudan has reached "unprecedented" levels, with nearly 5 million people suffering from severe food insecurity. (AP Photo/Justin Lynch, File)  (The Associated Press)

The United Nations says hunger in South Sudan has reached "unprecedented" levels, with nearly 5 million people suffering from severe food insecurity.

The U.N.'s Food and Agriculture Organization said Friday that without a return to stability that will allow agricultural production to continue, "the situation could rapidly become catastrophic."

The World Food Program has said both South Sudan's government and the opposition have held up food shipments in parts of this East African country, which is trying to recover from civil war.

Roughly $30 million in supplies were looted from warehouses of the two U.N. agencies during clashes between government and rebel forces in July,

South Sudan is experiencing severe hyperinflation, and the World Food Program said the price of food spiked by 778 percent after the July fighting.