Officials in East Africa say a report to be released this week estimates that 260,000 people died in Somalia’s 2011 famine, more than double previous estimates.

The report by two US Government-funded famine and food agencies gives the highest toll from Somalia’s 2011 famine. One previous estimate said between 50,000 and 100,000 people died.

A Western official briefed on the report told The Associated Press that it says 260,000 people died, and that half the victims were five years of age and under.

Two other international officials briefed on the report confirmed that the toll’s report was in the quarter-million range. All three insisted they not be identified because they were not authorised to share the report’s contents before it is officially released.

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