UN calls for 'unhindered' access for Somalia aid

Security Council expresses deep concern about humanitarian situation in Somalia, including continued risk of famine, impact of recent flooding.

UNITED NATIONS - The United Nations Security Council called Thursday for "unhindered humanitarian access" in Somalia, expressing concern about the risk of famine in the conflict-racked country.

"The Security Council expresses deep concern about the humanitarian situation in Somalia, including the continued risk of famine and the impact of recent flooding," the council said in a statement adopted Thursday.

"The Security Council notes with concern that the fighting has exacerbated the humanitarian situation and calls on all parties to allow and facilitate full, safe, rapid and unhindered humanitarian access," it said.

On the security situation, the council expressed "serious concern at the ongoing threat posed by A1-Shabab," the armed group that has been trying since 2007 to overthrow successive internationally-backed Somali governments.

Al-Shabab frequently carries out car and truck bombings against military, government and civilian targets in the country.

Somalia has not had an effective central government since the 1991 overthrow of president Siad Barre's military regime which ushered in decades of anarchy and conflict.