Kenya's government has declared the drought ravaging large parts of the country a national disaster, and President Uhuru Kenyatta is warning food distributors not to take advantage of the crisis to enrich themselves.

The president also is asking the international community for aid, but a statement from his office Friday did not say how much the government is seeking from abroad.

Almost half of this East African nation's counties are facing drought — 23 out of 47.

It is a regional crisis. Earlier Friday, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies said the worsening drought is putting 11 million people in Kenya, Somalia and Ethiopia in urgent need of help.

Kenya's drought management authority says about 2.7 million people are in need and livestock are threatened.