Children in a Niger hospital
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Niger action could prevent disaster, say aid agencies

26 March 2012 Last updated at 19:57 BST

British aid agencies working in Niger are warning of a food crisis after severe crop failures across the impoverished country.

The West African nation is the seventh poorest in the world.

More than one in five children already die before the age of five, and as the desert spreads further south, even more land is lost to agriculture.

But, as Andrew Harding reports, the agencies say action now could prevent a humanitarian disaster.