At least 137 children have died of starvation in Colombia so far this year, the National Health Institute (INS) announced Monday.
According to the INS, last week alone six children died of causes related to malnutrition.
The health institute said that the majority of children who died were babies younger than one year old. Some 68% of the deceased children belong to indigenous groups.
The situation is most dire in the north of the country, said the INS.
Affected communities and the ombudsman’s office blame corruption for most of the deaths.
According to the Ombudsman’s Office, programs that seek to feed children in impoverished areas are failing because funds for food are stolen by corrupt officials.
National authorities have been bickering over who is responsible for the dramatic situation, but have yet to present plans to curb child mortality due to malnutrition.