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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Mali, Mauritania
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    Insécurité alimentaire minime dans la plupart des zones rurales

    MESSAGES CLÉS

    • Bien que les stocks familiaux des ménages pauvres soient épuisées dans la plupart des zones, le bon fonctionnement des flux (internes, transfrontaliers et d’importations) assureront une bonne disponibilité au niveau national et régional au moins jusqu’en juin. On ne s’attend donc pas, entre avril et juin, à une notable dégradation des conditions alimentaires des ménages (Figures 1 et 2).

    • Les bonnes conditions pastorales, et des termes d’échange animal/céréales favorables et l’accès, à partir de juin, aux revenus provenant du travail agricole qu’on s’attend à conforme à celui d’une année moyenne, assureront, à la plupart des ménages pauvres jusqu’en septembre, une insécurité alimentaire minimale (IPC Phase 1)(Figure 3).

    • Cependant, entre avril et juin, les ménages pauvres du sud-est de la zone de cultures pluviales (moughataa de Bassikounou) et dans une moindre mesure ceux du nord-ouest de la zone agropastorale (moughataa d’Aleg) qui sont à dominante agricole resteront en situation de Stress (IPC Phase 2) comme ceux du nord affectés par un déficit pluviométrique qui dure depuis 2012.

    • La reprise de l’insécurité dans le nord-ouest du Mali ayant relancé le flux des refugiés, et réduit les retombées financières et alimentaires que les ménages mauritaniens pauvres tiraient de leur exode saisonnier, il en résulte une situation de Stress des ménages (autochtones et refugiés) qui pour le moment n’est contenue que grâce à l’assistance humanitaire. Un disfonctionnement de cette derniere pourrait dégrader la situation entre avril et juin et accentuer la situation de Stress.


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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo
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    L'Afrique de l’Ouest peut être divisée en trois zones agro-écologiques ou en trois bassins commerciaux (bassins de l’ouest, bassin du centre, bassin de l’est). Les deux sont importants pour l'interprétation du comportement et de la dynamique du marché.

    Les trois principales zones agro-écologiques incluent la zone Sahélienne, la zone Soudanaise et la zone Côtière où la production et la consommation peuvent être facilement classifiées. (1) Dans la zone Sahélienne, le mil constitue le principal produit alimentaire cultivé et consommé en particulier dans les zones rurales et de plus en plus par certaines populations qui y ont accès en milieux urbains. Des exceptions sont faites pour le Cap Vert où le maïs et le riz sont les produits les plus importants, la Mauritanie où le blé et le sorgho et le Sénégal où le riz constituent des aliments de base. Les principaux produits de substitution dans le Sahel sont le sorgho, le riz, et la farine de manioc (Gari), avec les deux derniers en période de crise. (2)
    Dans la zone Soudanienne (le sud du Tchad, le centre du Nigéria, du Bénin, du Ghana, du Togo, de la Côte d'Ivoire, le sud du Burkina Faso, du Mali, du Sénégal, la Guinée Bissau, la Serra Leone, le Libéria) le maïs et le sorgho constituent les principales céréales consommées par la majorité de la population. Suivent après le riz et les tubercules particulièrement le manioc et l’igname. (3) Dans la zone côtière, avec deux saisons de pluie, l’igname et le maïs constituent les principaux produits alimentaires. Ils sont complétés par le niébé, qui est une source très significative de protéines.

    Les trois bassins commerciaux sont simplement connus sous les noms de bassin Ouest, Centre, et Est. En plus du mouvement du sud vers le nord des produits, les flux de certaines céréales se font aussi horizontalement. (1) Le bassin Ouest comprend la Mauritanie, le Sénégal, l’ouest du Mali, la Sierra Leone, la Guinée, le Libéria, et la Gambie où le riz est le plus commercialisé. (2) Le bassin central se compose de la Côte d'Ivoire, le centre et l’est du Mali, le Burkina Faso, le Ghana, et le Togo où lemaïs est généralement commercialisé. (3) Le bassin Est se rapporte au Niger, Nigéria, Tchad, et Bénin où le millet est le plus fréquemment commercialisé. Ces trois bassins commerciaux sont distingués sur la carte ci-dessus


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Nigeria
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    HIGHLIGHTS

    • At least 339 fatalities and 5,120 IDPs recorded in March alone from inter communal conflict and ethno-religious violence.

    • Increased risk of acute food insecurity after the 2012 flooding

    • 296,500 children under-5 will be affected by severe acute malnutrition in 2013


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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Mali, Niger

    AGANDO, Niger, April 23 (UNHCR) – When Ali Mahmoud fled his home in eastern Mali last year, he took along a skill that has helped him survive, thrive and even find a wife in exile in western Niger.

    The 40-year-old has been using his expertise as a blacksmith to earn a handsome living in the Agando refugee site since leaving his home eight months ago in Méneka, just across the border in Mali's Gao province.

    His enterprise is encouraged by UNHCR, which has this year launched self-sufficiency projects in the camps. "We have started to organize income-generation activities in the refugee camps, not only to give refugees opportunities to earn money, but also to allow them to contribute to their living and not rely on assistance," explained Karl Steinacker, UNHCR's representative in Niger.

    Ali specializes in making knives and the ornamental swords that are a part of Tuareg culture and proudly displays a range of his products to visitors from UNHCR. "These are the kinds of blades that I usually make," he says, adding that he also mends iron tools.

    Business is brisk and he reckons that he earns the equivalent of about US$50 every day. "Every man here owns a sword or wants to own one," says Ali's father and fellow blacksmith, Galio.

    Ali says it takes him three or four days to make an ornamental knife or sword with engravings. He buys the metal, including iron and copper, at the market [in Agando] and forms, heat treats and finishes the blades using hammers and a simple anvil outside his shelter made of straw and branches. A good knife sells for US$50, while a sword and sheath command a price of US$100.

    People also come to get their damaged tools and blades mended by Ali and a queue starts building up outside his home from early morning. He accepts barter – normally food – from those who cannot pay in cash.

    "Nobody else here can work with iron as well as Ali," says Hawlata, after handing over half a kilo of flour to get her household knives repaired and sharpened. "He is a skilled man," echoes Habba, the smithy's neighbour. He brought an axe to be fixed.

    In Agando, Ali's success has brought him more business than he ever had in Méneka, where all his earnings went to support his parents, two brothers and sister. But now, for the first time, he is earning enough to get married. And he's picked a bride – Anata. She's 18 years old and comes from his home village.

    "I'm very happy to have met Anata," he says, adding that he has saved around US$600 to pay for the dowry. "I love her very much," the smitten blacksmith says as he sips hot tea from a small glass.

    Meanwhile, Ali is preparing to move to a safer camp deeper inside Niger at Intikan, which is located some 80 kilometres from the border. UNHCR will be helping about 17,000 Malian refugees to the new site, where it will also be easier to provide them with protection and assistance.

    He's looking forward to the move and is confident that his business will thrive there too. "I am eager to go as soon as possible to Intikan, where I hope the number of my customers will double or triple," says Ali. If business is that good he hopes to hire other refugees.

    Meanwhile, his neighbours and friends, are happy that they will be able to continue to rely on his services in the new camp. "He is an asset to our community and we are happy we can move with him to Intikan," says Habba. And Ali hopes he can benefit from UNHCR's livelihood's programme there.

    There are currently more than 50,000 Malian refugees living in Niger.

    By Bernard Ntwari in Agando, Niger


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    Source: IRIN
    Country: Mali

    BAMAKO/GAO, 23 avril 2013 (IRIN) - Les habitants des villes de Gao et Tombouctou, au nord du Mali, demandent le retour rapide des fonctionnaires, qui pourront remettre en route les services de base et gérer leurs villes où, disent-ils, règne un « chaos total ».

    Après dix mois d'occupation, les groupes d'insurgés ont été évincés de la plupart des grandes villes du Nord, y compris Gao et Tombouctou, par les forces françaises, tchadiennes et maliennes. Malgré l'appel lancé par le gouvernement fédéral, très peu de fonctionnaires ont regagné leur poste.

    En l'absence d'administration, les résidents - et notamment les anciens des villages, les chefs, les femmes et les jeunes - font fonctionner les services de base et s'efforcent de nettoyer les dégâts.

    Désorganisation

    Au début du mois d'avril, le gouverneur et les préfets de Gao ont fait leur retour, tout comme le directeur de l'académie, qui est chargé de la supervision des établissements scolaires de la région. À Tombouctou, le gouverneur et les deux préfets ont regagné leur poste. Les fonctionnaires responsables de la santé, de l'énergie, de l'éducation, de la planification et d'autres programmes ne sont pas encore revenus.

    Dans la ville de Kidal, qui est toujours contrôlée par le Mouvement national de libération de l'Azawad (MNLA), le gouvernement a nommé un gouverneur et des conseillers, qui se trouvent encore à Bamako, la capitale, et le MNLA a nommé son propre gouverneur.

    La quasi-totalité des services régionaux de Gao sont désorganisés, a dit Aliou Touré, un enseignant de la ville de Gao. « La santé, l'agriculture, les impôts, le développement social, la police, la protection civile, le trésor, les banques . tous ces services sont désorganisés . Les fonctionnaires doivent revenir afin de [remettre] leur ville sur les rails ».

    Le retour des fonctionnaires serait une garantie de stabilité et pourrait dissuader les insurgés de rester aux abords des villes, a-t-il dit.

    En mars et en avril, les villes de Gao, Tombouctou et Kidal ont été attaquées par des insurgés qui s'étaient cachés dans des villages des environs.

    La semaine dernière, le général Tiéfing Konaté, ministre de la Sécurité intérieure et de la Protection civile, a promis que la police ferait son retour à Tombouctou avant la fin du mois d'avril.

    Oumar Sangaré, un autre enseignant de Gao, ressent de la colère. « Les fonctionnaires doivent revenir pour remettre de l'ordre. On ne peut pas vivre comme des animaux dans la jungle, sans lois, sans installations sanitaires de base, sans protection. Le gouvernement et les services bancaires doivent être remis en route tout de suite », a-t-il dit. « C'est le chaos total ici ».

    Les enseignants du public doivent aller à Mopti, ville située à 500 km de là, pour obtenir leur salaire, a-t-il dit, étant donné l'absence de services bancaires. « C'est ridicule ».

    Si les groupes d'aide locaux et internationaux fournissent des denrées alimentaires de base et de l'eau, des soins de santé et des services d'hygiène, ainsi que d'autres denrées de base à de nombreuses personnes vulnérables des régions du Nord, les programmes d'urgence essentiels, comme la distribution à grande échelle de fourrage et les campagnes de vaccination du bétail - qui sont essentielles à l'approche de la saison maigre - nécessitent la supervision du gouvernement [ http://www.irinnews.org/fr/Report/97811/Aggravation-de-la-crise-pour-les... ].

    Auto-organisation sur fond de pénurie

    Le nombre de fonctionnaires déplacés est tel que le gouvernement fédéral a demandé aux anciens et aux chefs des villages d'établir des comités de gestion dans les villes de Gao et Tombouctou pour gérer la situation de la manière la plus efficace possible.

    M. Touré, l'enseignant, a indiqué que ces comités rencontraient des difficultés : « Ils ne peuvent travailler, car ils manquent d'expérience ou de moyens ».

    À Gao, les femmes et les jeunes ont formé un groupe pour nettoyer la ville, a dit Daouda Traoré, un journaliste local.

    À Kidal, les résidents se sont organisés au sein d'un comité de gestion.

    Une grande partie du Nord connaît des pénuries d'eau, d'électricité et de carburant. Les deux principaux générateurs de la ville de Gao ne fonctionnent pas, ce qui veut dire que l'électricité n'est disponible que de 18h00 à 23h30, selon un responsable de la compagnie Énergie du Mali, EDM. Le Comité international de la Croix-Rouge (CICR) soutient la fourniture de carburant pour les centrales électriques de Kidal, Gao et Tombouctou afin d'assurer un accès à l'eau aux habitants. Dernièrement, l'organisation a demandé 50 millions de dollars pour maintenir ce service, pour distribuer de la nourriture à 420 000 personnes, des semences aux agriculteurs, du fourrage et des vaccins aux éleveurs [ http://www.icrc.org/fre/resources/documents/news-release/2013/04-10-mali... ].

    À Tombouctou, la fourniture de combustibles est plus régulière grâce, notamment, à un riche négociateur qui offre du carburant.

    Le gouvernement a élaboré un projet d'un montant de 198 millions de dollars pour reconstruire et réhabiliter le nord du Mali, a dit Bassidy Coulibaly, directeur général du ministère de l'Administration territoriale de Bamako, mais seulement 12 pour cent des fonds nécessaires sont disponibles.

    Élections

    Sous la pression de la communauté internationale, le gouvernement s'est engagé à organiser des élections d'ici juillet, mais des diplomates reconnaissent en privé que cette échéance est ambitieuse et ajoutent que les élections seront plus probablement organisées d'ici à la fin de l'année.

    « Si le gouvernement veut vraiment organiser des élections d'ici juillet, l'administration doit revenir aussi vite que possible. Sinon, qui organisera les élections dans les régions ? », a demandé Oumar Touré, un fonctionnaire à la retraite de Tombouctou. Il craignait également que les résidents déplacés ne puissent pas voter.

    « C'est inconcevable que des personnes [des résidents déplacés] reviennent - le gouverneur, les préfets travaillent dans une atmosphère d'anarchie totale », a-t-il dit à IRIN.

    Peur

    Bon nombre de résidents de Gao comprennent que les fonctionnaires hésitent à revenir.

    Daouda Diarra, un journaliste de Gao, a dit à IRIN, « Je pense qu'ils [les fonctionnaires] ont raison d'avoir peur. Gao n'est pas complètement sécurisée et rien ne fonctionne ici. Tout a été pillé, détruit ou attaqué. Est-ce qu'ils travailleront sous des arbres ? Est-ce qu'ils vivront dans des arbres ? Le gouvernement doit satisfaire un minimum d'exigences avant de demander aux citoyens et aux fonctionnaires de revenir, sinon il les enverra juste à l'abattoir », a-t-il dit à IRIN par téléphone.

    Moulaye Sayah, qui vit désormais à Tombouctou, était médecin à Kidal avant les évènements de 2012. « Le travail, c'est important, mais la vie, c'est sacré. Avant toute chose, il faut se protéger », a-t-il dit.

    « Je comprends les doléances des populations du Nord qui demandent le retour de l'administration, mais comment et où pouvons-nous travailler ? », a-t-il dit, ajoutant que bon nombre de Maliens noirs ont peur de revenir à Kidal, qui est contrôlée par le MNLA.

    Abdoul Karim Koné, sous-préfet de la ville de Toguérécoumbé, située dans la région centrale de Mopti, n'est pas d'accord. Cela fait deux semaines qu'il a repris le travail : « Le risque zéro n'existe pas. Si notre heure arrive, que ce soit à Kidal, Gao ou Bamako, c'est fini. Les gens doivent l'accepter et ils doivent reprendre le travail ».

    sd/aj/rz-mg/amz

    [FIN]


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    Source: UN Operation in Côte d'Ivoire
    Country: Côte d'Ivoire, Mali

    Les 235 officiers, sous-officiers et soldats des Forces Républicaines de Côte d’Ivoire (FRCI) qui seront bientôt déployés en vue de contribuer à la Mission Internationale de Soutien au Mali (MISMA), ont entamé mardi 23 avril 2013, une formation et une sensibilisation de deux jours sur la thématique des Droits de l’Homme, du Droit Humanitaire International et de la Protection des Civils.

    Consciente du fait que sur le terrain, les troupes ivoiriennes seront confrontées à ces défis inhérents à toute mission de maintien de paix, la Division des Droits de l’Homme (DDH) de l’ONUCI, à travers cette formation leur donne les outils pour y faire efficacement face.

    Ouvrant la session, le responsable de la DDH de l’ONUCI, Eugène Nindorera a souligné que « le respect des Droits de l’Homme reste un impératif pour le personnel d’une opération de maintien de la paix, qu’il soit civil, policier ou militaire. Il est important de leur rappeler que des règles existent même en temps de conflits » a-t-il dit.

    Le responsable de la Division des Droits de l’Homme (DDH) de l’ONUCI, M. Nindorera a, par ailleurs, salué la bonne collaboration entre l’ONUCI et la haute hiérarchie de l’armée ivoirienne.


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    Source: Emirates News Agency
    Country: Benin, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Chad, Ghana, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Mauritania, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, Thailand, Uganda, Yemen

    The Higher Committee of Foreign aid at the Red Crescent Authority has allocated Dh 4.027 million to carry out developmental projects in a number of countries.

    The assistance will cover health, education and social services sectors in addition to the provision of water supplies in areas which suffer from shortage of this vital service.

    These projects will be carried out in a number of countries, including Palestine, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, Jordan and Pakistan, Senegal, Bosnia, Uganda, Benin, Thailand, Chad, in addition to Ghana, Lebanon, Libya and Mauritania.

    Naima Eid Al Muhairi, Acting Deputy Secretary General for Relief and Projects at the RCA, said that the higher committee of foreign aid embodies the distinguished role the RCA is playing at the international humanitarian scene and conflicts and disasters areas. – Emirates News Agency, WAM


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    Source: UN Department of Public Information
    Country: Mali

    Crises of governance, corruption and nepotism were at the root cause of unrest in Mali, said Comfort Ero, Director of the International Crisis Group’s Africa Programme, at a Headquarters press conference today as she introduced the Group’s report, “Mali: Security, Dialogue, and Meaningful Reform”.

    The report’s findings came at an opportune time, Ms. Ero said, ahead of the Security Council action on a draft resolution on the deployment of a stabilization force in Mali. That resolution would prove to be a “test case” for the future of international peace and security.

    The Council had adopted resolution 2085 (2012) last December, stressing the need for democratic governance and constitutional order in Mali and condemning strongly all abuses of human rights in the North.

    Urging that Mali not be viewed through the “war on terror lense”, Ms. Ero said the report examined multiple challenges facing the West African nation, and aimed at contributing to the United Nations stabilization mission. At the same time, the report focused on helping Member States think about how a stabilizing operation could be navigated in such dangerous terrain. Based on interactive discussions and reflecting the concerns of the Security Council, as well as the Secretariat, the report concluded that the very first layer of crisis in Mali was lack of governance, nepotism and corruption.

    She pointed out that there was a real security crisis in northern Mali, which had laid the ground for rebellion. Added to that, Mali had become a haven for networks of terrorist groups that had “coalesced in no-man’s land”, threatening national, regional and international security. The objective, therefore, was to rebuild a country that was better equipped to deal with a number of internal pressures and a range of security threats that had national and international implications.

    The biggest challenge, she said, was figuring out how to “marry” the two objectives — stabilizing the region and dealing with the international security threat while implementing a counter-terror strategy. Those familiar with the situations in Afghanistan and Somalia were aware that making that connection was extremely challenging.

    The French military intervention, she noted, had dramatically changed the situation on the ground, considering that Mali had been “on the verge” of a second coup. Prior to that, there had been a nine month political stalemate. Although the intervention had deterred a possible political disaster, the French forces needed to bring the political dimension back on track, rather than just pursue a security dimension. “The security train cannot be allowed to go full stream ahead” without acknowledging the importance of the political dimension, she stated.

    She also expressed concern that the United Nations stabilization mission was entering a difficult climate. The deployment of United Nations forces was dangerous because it was not clear who the enemy was. Further, the Malian Government could not abdicate responsibility to the United Nations with the notion that the United Nations would do all the “heavy lifting”.

    Although necessary for a transition and an attempt to bring back a sense of democracy, she said that the moment might not be right to hold elections. It was, however, important to consider that the situation went well beyond Mali. Mali could not be asked to be the solution for all regional troubles, nor could it be “the prism to solve all the problems”, she stressed, adding that a regional and international security dimension was the missing link.

    When asked what role the United Nations peacekeeping mission should have, she said that the mission must be willing to include various armed groups. “You cannot impose preconditions on the dialogue process” beyond asking the groups to renounce the armed struggle, she pointed out. There was also need for an inter-communal dialogue.

    In response to a question on the regional dynamic with Algeria, she said Algerians had given airspace to the French to put in place airstrikes against jihadists forces. Algeria had also communicated with French forces and had not criticized the French operation in Mali, which, given their shared history, was quite a “significant moment”. The Algerian Government had made the determination that it would be part of the process. “The North of Mali was the South of Algeria,” she observed, noting that there was a lot of cross-border affinity.

    When asked how she expected the situation to be after the French downgrade their intervention, she said she didn’t want to sound like a spokesperson for the French forces. The French had not been able to eradicate the jihadist groups, as most of them had retreated into the mountainous region. Furthermore, the French would be the first to say that their work was not done.

    Asked if the jihadist groups were connected to Algeria, she said that the history of jihadists and terror networks did not start just last year. That history was tied to Algeria’s internal crisis. It was very clear that some jihadist groups had, as a reaction to Algeria’s military campaign, spilled over into other countries, going well beyond Mali to Niger and Nigeria, in particular. Hence, the regional dimension needed to be worked out so that the problem could be dealt with “once and for all”.

    Responding to a question on the situation in northeast Mali, she said the Government itself was undermining the democratic process. There had long been a historic division of the North and South. However, reiterating previous comments, she said it all came down to lack of governance, corruption and nepotism. In addition, as political instability ensued in Mali, a number of fighters had returned from Libya, which led to rebellion forces uniting. At the same time, the Malian military was frustrated that monies and resources to fight the rebellion had never been made available to them, which then led to a military revolt.

    Asked whether she believed there was a link between jihadists in Mali and today’s bombing of the French Embassy in Libya, she recalled a similar situation in Nigeria that had comparable patterns to today’s bombing. However, she could not say there was or was not a connection.

    In response to whether or not she was satisfied with the Security Council resolution on Mali, Ms. Ero said that there had been long engagement and discussion in the Council on Mali. There were still some concerns, however, on the operational side. On paper, there seemed to be adequate integration, but, in practice, the nature of intelligence sharing between a stabilizing force and the United Nations would be quite challenging. The United Nations peacekeeping mission was aware of the nature of the situation.

    Asked why the United Nations believed it was capable of fighting jihadists, she said that was not the case. The Council, she assured reporters, did not want a “more muscular” mission on the ground. The primary goal was to bring some order to the North while keeping peacekeepers safe. The United Nations was cautiously aware and had asked for a 45-day readout of the security situation on the ground before it would begin its peacekeeping operations.

    For information media • not an official record


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    Source: MSF
    Country: Niger
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    MSF Releases Report that diseases must be tackled together to pre-empt another crisis

    Madrid, 24 April 2013 – Increasing numbers of children are being treated for malaria and malnutrition in southern Niger by the international medical organisation Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) compared to a year ago, suggesting that 2013 may see higher peaks of the two diseases than previous years. With the rainy season on its way, and more cases of malnutrition and malaria expected, MSF believes that it is essential to pre-empt the crisis by using an integrated approach that focuses on preventing the diseases as well as treating them, in a report released today.

    “Urgent action is needed to stop children continuing to die from these preventable causes,” says Luis Encinas, MSF’s programme manager for Niger. “To tackle malnutrition and malaria, we need innovative approaches, and we need to work on two levels at the same time: prevention and cure.”

    Shocking results from a retrospective mortality survey carried out in the districts of Madoua and Bouza by MSF reveal the lethal nature of last year’s malaria peak. In the second half of the year, deaths among children under five were at three times the emergency threshold, and malaria accounted for more than half of those deaths. The peak also caused a sharp increase in the number of children admitted to hospital with severe malnutrition.

    Malaria and malnutrition are closely related. The months of the ‘hunger gap’, when malnutrition is at its peak, coincide with the rainy season, when mosquitoes breed and the number of malaria cases shoots up. The diseases combine in a vicious circle: malnourished children have weak immune systems, so their bodies are less able to fight diseases such as malaria, while children sick with malaria are more likely to become dangerously malnourished.

    Over recent years, strategies for combating malnutrition have shifted to include prevention as a key element, and MSF believes it is essential to do the same for malaria. MSF plans to implement a new prevention strategy known as seasonal malaria chemoprevention (SMC), in which children are provided with a full course of antimalarial treatment at intervals during the peak malaria season. This strategy was successfully used by MSF in Mali and Chad in 2012.

    Prevention strategies are crucial, MSF believes, but at the same time they need to be part of a more ambitious plan to address malnutrition and malaria as public health problems and to integrate their prevention and treatment into the set of basic health measures aimed at all young children in Niger.

    “The effort being made to treat malnutrition in Niger is tremendous, and this needs to be supported,” says José Antonio Bastos, president of MSF in Spain. “The problem in 2012 was that a massive plan for treating malnutrition was prepared and implemented, but it excluded other health needs, in particular malaria prevention and immunisations. It failed to take account of the fact that even if you provide children with appropriate nutrition, you can still lose them to malaria or a respiratory infection. There is a need for an integrated response, rather than for pushing one response to the exclusion of others.”

    To tackle this chronic emergency, MSF carried out a number of activities in Niger in 2012 aimed at improving access to healthcare for children under five and pregnant women. Medical teams in the regions of Zinder, Maradi and Tahoua run outpatient feeding programmes in some 37 health centres. Severely malnourished patients who needed hospital care were admitted to inpatient feeding centres in Zinder, Magaria, Madarounfa, Guidan Roumdji, Madoua and Bouza hospitals. In 2012, more than 90,000 children with acute malnutrition and 390,000 children with malaria were treated in medical facilities managed by MSF and its partners.


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    Source: ECOWAS
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo

    The ECOWAS experts' meeting on the education of girls and other vulnerable groups ended on Friday 19 April 2013 in Banjul with some important recommendations, whose implementation would go a long way to enhancing the promotion of the education of these marginalized social groups.

    In the first set of recommendations, the experts urged ECOWAS to support and assist the Member States’ stakeholders to work consistently and comprehensively for the mobilization of technical and financial support from relevant bodies to effectively implement the programmes and activities on the education of girls/women and other vulnerable groups.

    ECOWAS was also urged to leverage the progress made in some Member States in this sector and support others to catch up while supporting and assisting the States in embarking on high-level advocacy with a view to increasing funding for the implementation of programmes and activities.

    Regarding the current situation in Mali, the participants took note of the impacts of such crises on school infrastructure and recommended that the ECOWAS Commission include education in its emergency measures for Member States, with particular reference to this country.

    They also recommended that ECOWAS establish a forum of partners involved in the education of girls and other vulnerable groups in the States to ensure a better coordinated response and resource mobilization while counterpart funding for programmes and projects initiated by partners should be provided.

    On the states, a recommendation was made for them to set aside a special budget line for the girls and vulnerable children as the education of girls and other vulnerable groups in Member States transcends various sectors and ministries. Furthermore, the Banjul meeting recommended that national coordinators be appointed by the States, who should not only serve as focal points and members of the regional network but contribute to the coordination of initiatives in this sector.

    They were also urged to implement legislations/legal frameworks that guarantee the rights of girls and other disadvantaged groups, as well as enact laws that make basic education free and compulsory, with institutionalized fines or penalties against parents who refuse to send their children to school.

    Moreover, they should ensure that basic education is actually free in terms of tuition fees, uniforms, textbooks and other teaching materials, while they should regularly allocate a share of their budget to the girls and other marginalized groups and institute mechanisms to ensure that these funds are actually used for the intended purpose.

    In addition, the States were encouraged to ensure the implementation of policies and programmes for the introduction of national languages, folklore and cultural activities in the educational system in order to mitigate the impact of the transition from the home to the school and facilitate learning.

    States were also urged to strengthen the existing Education Management Information Systems (EMIS) so as to produce regular and reliable data to impact on planning and encourage women participation in the educational system to serve as models to the community, particularly in teaching was another recommendation made to the States.

    The recommendation also concern partners who were asked to undertake advocacy actions with ECOWAS and the Member States on the deployment of human and financial resources for identified programmes and activities. They should sensitize the States on the access, retention and, at least, the completion of basic education.

    These partners, whose representatives participated actively in the Banjul meeting, should also provide technical and financial support to ECOWAS and the Member States with a view to expediting the programmes and activities undertaken for the education of the girls and other vulnerable groups.

    During the closing ceremony, the delegates and other key stakeholders expressed satisfaction at the excellent work and commended ECOWAS’ intervention while advocating for the continuation of this useful and relevant intervention for the education of girls/women and other vulnerable groups.

    The ECOWAS Director of Edcuation, Culture, Science and Technology, Professor Abdoulaye Maiga represented the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Mr. Kadré Désiré Ouédraogo, at the closing ceremony during which expressed gratitude to all the participants for their contribution to the success of the meeting.

    He gave the assurance that the Commission will strive to implement the key recommendations before asking all the delegates to facilitate the implementation of the key recommendations in their countries.

    In her closing remarks, the Director of Basic and Secondary Education in The Gambia, Mrs. Amie Kolleh Mbye, who represented the country’s Minister of Education, commended the participants for the quality of work done. She noted that with the excellent coverage of the many factors militating against the education of the girls/women and other vulnerable groups, there was optimism about the prospect for addressing the challenges to these groups.

    In addition, Mrs. Amie Kolleh Mbye reaffirmed the commitment of the Gambian government to redouble its efforts in order to promote the education of the girls/women and other vulnerable groups.

    During the four-day meeting, the participants had a presentation on the status of implementation of the ECOWAS programme on girls’ education, and presentations from UNESCO, UNICEF, CIEFFA/AU (International Centre for Girls’ and Women’s Education in Africa), FAWE (Forum for African Women Educationalists) and ANCEFA (African Network Campaign on Education for All).

    Subsequently, each ECOWAS Member State made a presentation on its own achievements in the pursuit of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the campaign on the Education for All (EFA) and the implementation of the Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA) programmes.

    It should be noted that with a view to dealing with the plight of young girls, women and other vulnerable groups, the ECOWAS Commission is currently undertaking multisectoral approaches such as the Gender Division’s Child and Sexual Harassment Policy, and the Disaster Management Division’s Child Protection Policy.


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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Gambia
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    FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

    • Estimates for the 2012 harvest point to a large recovery in cereal production

    • The food supply situation has improved in 2012/13 compared to the previous year

    • However, access to food continues to be constrained by high food prices and the lingering effects of last year food crisis

    Seasonably dry conditions prevail across the country and the 2013 cropping season is expected to start in June.

    An above-average cereal harvest estimated following improved weather

    Harvesting of the 2012 rainfed cereal crops was completed last November. Despite flooding in parts, adequate rainfall during the main cropping season has resulted in a substantial recovery in cereal production. According to the final estimates, the 2012 cereal output was estimated at about 219 000 tonnes, 36 percent higher than the 2011 drought-affected output and 4 percent above the average of the past five years.

    In 2011, dry spells and poor rainfall distribution during the growing period (July to October) resulted in a 35 percent decline in cereal production compared to the previous year.

    Access to food constrained by high food prices

    The Gambia, in a normal year, relies on imports for nearly half of its cereal consumption requirements (mostly rice and wheat) and domestic cereal prices are strongly affected by world prices and the exchange rate of the Dalasi (GMD), the national currency.

    The Dalasi has depreciated significantly over the past few years, which combined with high international commodity prices, has put an upward pressure on domestic prices of imported food commodities.

    The improved domestic harvest position, coupled with adequate supply in most neighbouring countries and favourable trends in international food exports markets, is expected to lead to much improved food availability during the 2012/13 marketing year (November/October). However domestic prices of imported cereals are likely to stay high, in view of the continuing depreciation of the Dalasi. Access to food will remain difficult for several segments of the population.

    Continued assistance is still needed, especially for vulnerable people

    A significant portion of the population will continue to be food insecure this year mostly as a result of reduced access to food due to high food prices and the lingering effects of last year’s food crisis.

    Last year, about 700 000 people have been affected by food insecurity, following a poor 2011 cereal production.


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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Chad, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal

    04/24/2013 15:04 GMT

    NOUAKCHOTT, 24 avr 2013 (AFP) - Vingt millions de personnes vivant au Sahel, dont 4,3 millions au Mali, connaissent une situation alimentaire "grave", a affirmé mercredi à Nouakchott le président de la Fédération internationale des sociétés de la Croix-Rouge et du Croissant-Rouge (FICR).

    "Quelque 20 millions de personnes dans tout le Sahel font encore face à des pénuries (alimentaires) graves" a dit le président de la FICR, le Japonais Tadateru Konoé, à l'ouverture d'une réunion du Groupe Sahel plus.

    Cette structure regroupe les sociétés nationales de Croix-Rouge et Croissant Rouge de dix pays sahéliens: Burkina Faso, Cap-Vert, Gambie, Guinée, Guinée-Bissau, Mali, Mauritanie, Niger, Sénégal et Tchad.

    M. Konoé a estimé que parmi ces personnes en situation alimentaire difficile, figurent 4,3 millions de Maliens, incluant des réfugiés et déplacés internes, qui "ont besoin d'une assistance alimentaire en raison du conflit prolongé".

    Une coalition internationale dirigée par la France intervient au Mali depuis plus de trois mois et a quasiment chassé du nord de ce pays les islamistes armés liés à Al-Qaïda qui ont occupé cette région en 2012.

    Selon le président de la FICR, l'état de santé de "bien de communautés au Sahel est compromis par la fragilité des infrastructures et des systèmes de santé dans beaucoup de pays" au moment où "le risque d'épidémies est accru par la mauvaise qualité de l'eau et des systèmes d'assainissement, la malnutrition et le manque de personnel de santé".

    La réunion du Groupe Sahel plus, qui prend fin jeudi, doit examiner "les défis humanitaires dans la zone sahélienne et les différents programmes et projets pour y faire face", a précisé le porte-parole de M. Konoé, Moustapha Diallo.

    Le Sahel avait déjà connu une crise alimentaire en 2010-12. La semaine dernière, un responsable de la Commission européenne chargé de l'aide humanitaire et de la protection civile (ECHO) avait déclaré que plus de 10 millions de personnes étaient menacées de pénurie alimentaire en 2013 dans neuf pays d'Afrique de l'Ouest et Centrale, du Sénégal au Tchad.

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    © 1994-2013 Agence France-Presse


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    Source: IRIN
    Country: Ethiopia, India, Kenya, Niger, World

    JOHANNESBURG, 24 April 2013 (IRIN) - Studies out of Ethiopia, India, Kenya and Niger show that children born during natural hazards, like droughts or floods, are more likely to be malnourished. Yet as the climate changes, it is poor countries - already struggling with hunger and food insecurity - that are increasingly likely to face these natural hazards.

    A recent conference considered this issue from the perspective of “climate justice” - an approach to climate change focusing on the rights of vulnerable people who are the least responsible for causing climate change but among the most affected.

    The Hunger-Nutrition-Climate Justice (HNCJ) conference, held in Dublin, Ireland, was organized by Irish Aid, the Mary Robinson Foundation, CGIAR and the World Food Programme (WFP). Among the topics explored were “joined-up approaches” - also known as the “nexus” approach.

    The nexus approach seeks to find solutions based on the interconnections between various sectors or disciplines. For instance, addressing interconnected malnutrition and climate change problems would involve working across health, agriculture, environment, water and land management sectors.

    “No one level, sector or stakeholder group alone can identify and implement sustainable solutions to complex societal challenges such as hunger and climate change,” said one of the papers at the conference.

    IRIN spoke to experts about how joined-up approaches and "climate justice" can help improve nutrition for the most vulnerable and shape sustainable development efforts in the future.

    Joined-up approaches

    Experts say the nexus approach is a way to advance the social, environmental and economic aspects of sustainable development simultaneously.

    Oscar Ekdahl, WFP policy officer, says using joined-up approaches to address hunger, nutrition and climate justice should come naturally.

    “People’s needs, as well as opportunities, are by nature multi-sectoral,” he said. “More often than not, multiple sectors or service providers - for example ministries of agriculture, social planning, and environment - are required to effectively address issues such as hunger and undernutrition.”

    Building resilience among vulnerable populations - entailing support from both humanitarian and development actors - can also help address nutrition and climate change problems simultaneously, says José Luis Vivero Pol, an anti-hunger activist with Université Catholique de Louvain. “Well-nourished people and children will better cope with climate change vagaries (either floods or droughts) than malnourished children,” he explained via email.

    FAO’s Richard China said the future of the nexus approach will be determined by how countries choose to allocate resources to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) - a set of goals the UN is formulating to guide development after the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) end in 2015.

    One of the criticisms levelled against the MDGs is that they have encouraged countries to ensure funds flow through sectors, or to adopt strategies with narrow sector-based approaches. Experts hope the SDGs will instead promote inter-related interventions by the various sectors.

    "The money you own cannot exclusively determine the food you get, as food is a basic human need" China says the UN Secretary-General'sZero Hunger Challenge, which aims to end hunger “in our lifetime”, underlines this inter-related approach. Achieving the goals - “100 percent access to adequate food; zero stunted children less than two [years old]; all food systems are sustainable; 100 percent increase in smallholder productivity and income; and zero loss and waste of food” - will require interventions across multiple sectors, including agriculture, health, nutrition and climatology.

    Overcoming status quo

    IRIN has explored the nexus between hunger, nutrition and health and the connections between water, energy and food, and has found that rigidly organized governments are often the biggest deterrents to accepting joined-up approaches.

    Lawrence Haddad, director of the Institute for Development Studies, says people already live in a joined-up world, and that “it is governments, donors and researchers who have the luxury of fragmenting” the world into sectors.

    To address this, he suggests introducing more problem-based training at the university level, which would encourage officials to think across sectors. He also recommends funding projects that link sectors, and ensuring government ministries are organized around problems rather than sectors.

    “None of these are easy, as they all will require disruption of the status quo and all the vested interests aligned with them,” he said.

    Even so, WFP’s Ekdahl says governments have begun “to budget time and finance required for this type of collaboration, but more is required.”

    Climate justice

    Climate change disproportionately threatens the food supplies of the most vulnerable, an issue campaigners for climate justice at the UN talks on climate change have been raising.

    Many advocates see a rights-based approach as essential to both sustainable development and climate justice. The UN, for instance, has been pushing countries to enact laws recognizing the right to affordable food, which would compel governments to act in times of food insecurity.

    In a joint paper for the HNCJ conference, UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food Olivier De Schutter, former president of Ireland Mary Robinson, and Tara Shine, the head of research and development at the Mary Robinson Foundation, say ensuring the rights to food, life, health, water and housing must be the foundation of any approach to sustainable development.

    But some are sceptical that this can be achieved.

    Pol, the anti-hunger activist, says climate justice is a “fancy word” and will only mean something if it "is implemented through binding legal frameworks and mounting public budgets”, with more restraints on the privatization of natural resources and common goods.

    He adds that appealing for climate justice seems meaningless when countries have failed to implement the Kyoto Protocol, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change.

    “The money you own cannot exclusively determine the food you get, as food is a basic human need,” Pol continued. “If we keep on thinking along those lines, within 50 years we'll have to pay for breathing...another human need."

    He advocates the polycentric approach developed by Nobel laureate Elinor Ostrom. This approach encourages natural resource management at multiple levels, including within communities. Individuals, communities, local governments and local NGOs should decide to take steps to address climate change rather than waiting for a global agreement between governments, according to Ostrom.

    Getting it in writing

    Haddad points to another inequality inherent in the relationship between malnutrition and climate change: "There is another type of injustice that affects everyone in the world - the injustice being the legacy that this generation is leaving the next one - wherever they live. This has some parallels with nutrition, because nutrition is also about what we as adults can do to prevent stunting in the first 1,000 days after conception - a legacy that plays out throughout the child's life... So there is a kindred spirit between the two issues of climate change and undernutrition... I think we could find ways to exploit it - perhaps in the context of the rising interest in resilience."

    WFP’s Ekdahl says that there is recognition of the importance of nutrition and food security among officials negotiating a UN treaty to prevent further global warming and to protect people from the effects of climate change.

    "However, there is less progress in terms of getting specific nutrition language into the actual text" of the treaty, he said.

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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Mali

    04/24/2013 18:28 GMT

    PARIS, April 24, 2013 (AFP) - Separatist Tuareg rebels in Mali on Wednesday refused to disarm or take part in elections planned for July until negotiations have taken place with Bamako.

    "The disarmament of the MNLA (the Tuareg's National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad) is out of the question. Have you ever seen a group disarm without negotiations?" Paris-based spokesman Mahamadou Djeri Maiga told a press conference.

    The MNLA launched a rebellion for independence of the north in January last year which plunged the west African nation into crisis.

    Its insurgency sparked a coup in Bamako by soldiers in March 2012, and the crisis deepened when the rebellion was hijacked by its Islamist allies, leaving the north of the country in the hands of hardline extremists.

    As former colonial power France swept to Mali's aid in January and drove out the Al Qaeda-linked Islamists, the MNLA again claimed control of the north-eastern town of Kidal, the heart of the Tuareg homeland which they call Azawad.

    French and Chadian troops took charge of securing the town, as the MNLA refused the presence of Malian soldiers, demanding autonomy.

    However both countries are now in the process of withdrawing their troops.

    "If the Malian army comes to Kidal we will have no other option but to defend ourselves. We have not given up arms," said Maiga, saying that "it is a war which is imminent, not elections."

    "As long as we have not sat around a table with representatives from the government in Bamako and the international community to provide us with guarantees, as long as refugees have not come home, we won't talk about elections."

    Over 400,000 Malians have been displaced since the start of the crisis.

    The Tuaregs, a Berber people who have lived a nomadic lifestyle in the region for two thousand years, have waged several rebellions against the southern government for independence in recent decades.

    Mali's conflict has also been marked by mob lynchings and other revenge attacks by black Malians against Arabs and Tuaregs -- whom they associate with the extremists -- leaving a tricky reconciliation process for the next elected government.

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    © 1994-2013 Agence France-Presse


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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: Niger, Norway

    Copenhagen/Oslo – Responding to the continuing challenges in Niger and the Sahel, the Government of Norway has announced an additional contribution of NOK 25 million to the United Nations World Food Programme’s activities in Niger.

    This critical and very generous contribution will contribute to the strengthening of resilience and reduction of emergency levels of malnutrition among communities seriously affected by the recurrent crises. The contribution is earmarked for the key food security initiative “Nigeriens feeding Nigeriens” which focuses on increasing agricultural production and access to markets.

    While in 2012, a wide-ranging humanitarian response to the severe drought helped avoid a catastrophe, the food security situation in the Sahel remains precarious. Malnutrition and mortality rates remain very high, even in non-crisis years with one child in five dying before their fifth birthday.

    In Niger, malnutrition rates are seriously elevated: ten percent of children under five suffer from acute malnutrition and 44 percent of children suffer from chronic malnutrition.

    “With more than 80 percent of the Nigeriens relying on farming, supporting small scale farmers, helping them to improve their yields and increasing their access to markets is key in overcoming the challenges of the severe and recurrent droughts. We are therefore extremely grateful for this critical and very timely contribution from the government of Norway,” says Ertharin Cousin, the Executive Director of WFP.

    In September 2012, a Strategic Partnership Agreement was signed between Norway and WFP. With a pledge of NOK 980 million (US$168 million), the Strategic Partnership Agreement ensures predictable funding to WFP for humanitarian and resilience building activities through 2015.

    A further NOK 12 million will be allocated to Niger from the Strategic Partnership Agreement funds – resulting in a total contribution of NOK 37 million to Niger.

    “WFP is one of Norway’s most important humanitarian partners and I have myself experienced the importance of WFP’s work in the fight against hunger and malnutrition in Niger,” says Heikki Holmås, Norway’s Minister for International Development.

    Because of the results delivered by WFP, Norway provided NOK 330 million in contributions to the organization in 2012. This substantial support made Norway the 15th largest donor overall and the 2nd largest per capita donor to WFP last year. In addition, Norway is a major contributor to the Central Emergency Response Fund which also provides WFP with important and timely funding. This makes Norway one of the top ten contributors of multilateral funding to WFP.

    WFP is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. Each year, WFP feeds more than 90 million people in more than 70 countries.

    Follow us on Twitter @WFP_NO and @wfp_media

    For more information please contact (email address: firstname.lastname@wfp.org):

    Anne Poulsen, WFP/Copenhagen, Tel: +45 4533 5350, Mob. +45 4050 3993

    Caroline Hurford, WFP/Rome, Tel. +39 06 6513 2330, Mob. +39 348 132 5018


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    Source: European Union
    Country: Chad, Iraq, Lebanon, Mali, occupied Palestinian territory, Syrian Arab Republic

    Additional EU funding totalling €70 million to meet humanitarian needs in Syria, Mali, the Sahel region and Chad. was approved by the Budgets Committee on Wednesday.

    Syria

    Two years after the start of the conflict, violence is intensifying inside Syria and the UN estimates that more than 4 million people urgently need humanitarian aid. In neighbouring Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt, governments and humanitarian organisations face huge difficulties in meeting the refugees' most basic needs.

    The amount allocated for Syria is €19.5 million, which comes on top of previous EU funding worth over €300 million.

    The additional funding will buy food, protection, shelter, medical supplies and psychosocial support for displaced persons in Syria proper and Syrian refugees in neighbouring countries, Palestinian and Iraqi refugees in Syria, and Lebanese and Iraqi returnees.

    Mali

    An additional €12 million in EU funding will meet new needs arising out of the military intervention in Mali. The money will be used to scale up existing food and health projects to prepare for the expected return of displaced persons within Mali and replacing stocks looted by jihadists before leaving (€3 million).

    Food aid contributions in the northern regions will be provided through the Red Cross (€5 million) and the World Food Programme (€2 million). Measures to improve humanitarian aid access to these regions (transport, demining, civil-military coordination) will be supported with €2 million.

    Previous EU aid to Mali in 2012 and 2013 totals €100 million.

    Sahel and Chad

    The Sahel is allocated €30 million to help tackle its food and nutrition crisis. An estimated 10 million people lack secure food supplies and over one million children are suffering from severe acute malnutrition. Recent reports show that the number of people at risk is growing rapidly.

    Hopes of a reasonable harvest and adequate food stocks in 2013 in the Sahel have proven over-optimistic, due in part to damage caused by massive flooding in Nigeria's food-producing areas.

    Chad is allocated €8 million, some of which will be used by World food Programme to supply food to 425,000 people for four months, starting in June 2013.


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    Source: Deutsche Welthungerhilfe e. V. (German Agro Action), Action Contre la Faim, Solidarités International, Oxfam
    Country: Mali

    Le nord du Mali passera à un niveau d’urgence (1) en matière de sécurité alimentaire, dans moins de deux mois, si la situation sécuritaire et l’accès humanitaire aux communautés vulnérables ne s’améliorent pas, alertent quatre organisations humanitaires suite à l’analyse des experts du Cadre harmonisé (2).

    Jusqu'à deux tiers (3) de la population des trois régions du Nord du Mali (Gao, Tombouctou et Kidal) vit actuellement en situation de crise d’insécurité alimentaire, avec deux cercles de Kidal déjà en situation d’urgence.

    Des enquêtes de marchés conduites récemment par Action Contre la Faim (ACF), Solidarités International, Welthungerhilfe (ex Agro-action allemande) et Oxfam, qui interviennent dans ces régions, montrent que les prix de certaines denrées de première nécessité ont fortement augmenté depuis janvier 2013 : 36 % à Gao, 30 % à Tombouctou et 25 % à Kidal. A Kidal, où 94 % des ménages doivent acheter leur nourriture sur les marchés, les deux tiers des commerçants grossistes qui fournissent ces marchés sont partis et le flux de céréales a diminué de 60 %. Les marchés de Tombouctou et de Goundam sont également mal approvisionnés en denrées de première nécessité.

    Alors que la période de soudure a débuté beaucoup plus tôt que prévu, les prix d’achat du bétail, et plus particulièrement des ovins et caprins, ont baissé, ce qui ne permet plus aux éleveurs d’acheter suffisamment de céréales. D’autre part, ces éleveurs n’ont pu conduire leur bétail aux zones de pâturages et points d’eau habituels. De plus, les opportunités de travail sont rares et la rémunération de la main d’œuvre journalière a baissé d’environ 2,5 dollars - l’année dernière à la même période - à 1,5 et 2 dollars actuellement pour la région de Gao, réduisant ainsi le pouvoir d’achat des ménages.

    Cette situation préoccupante est principalement due aux conséquences du conflit - dont la fermeture et/ou l’inaccessibilité des routes, la fermeture de la frontière algérienne, le départ des principaux acteurs économiques - ainsi qu’au caractère rudimentaire des systèmes de production et à l’insuffisance, préalable à cette crise, des aménagements dans les secteurs de l’agriculture et de l’élevage.

    « Au moment où l’attention de la communauté internationale est tournée sur la mission de la paix des Nations Unies, on risque de perdre de vue la situation humanitaire alarmante. Les parents sautent déjà des repas pour nourrir leurs enfants. Les familles au nord n’auront pas suffisamment de nourriture pour traverser les prochains mois avant les récoltes. Il faut intervenir vite et plus massivement avant une dégradation certaine de la situation alimentaire et nutritionnelle », indique le directeur d’Oxfam au Mali, Philippe Conraud.

    En effet, selon le Cadre harmonisé, l’assistance humanitaire prévue à ce jour ne couvrira sans doute pas tous les besoins. Ceci est dû au manque de financement des secteurs prioritaires (4) - l’appel humanitaire des Nations unies pour le Mali est ainsi financé seulement à hauteur de 106 millions au 24 avril 2013 - ainsi qu’à l’accès difficile aux zones en raison de la présence des groupes armés et des opérations des forces maliennes, africaines et françaises, du banditisme et de la présence de mines et autres engins non explosés.

    Aussi, ACF, Solidarités International, Welthungerhilfe et Oxfam appellent la communauté internationale et les bailleurs de fonds à se mobiliser pour apporter de l’assistance aux plus vulnérables. Ces organisations préconisent la mise en place, à plus grande échelle, de programmes d’assistance alimentaire, d’appui aux moyens d’existence, mais aussi d’assainissement et d’hygiène, de nutrition, de protection et d’amélioration de l’accès à l’eau et à la santé, tout en construisant la résilience.

    Organisations signataires : Action contre la Faim, Oxfam, Solidarités International et Welthungerhilfe. Notes aux rédactions

    1. Voir carte ci-dessus (disponible au grand format). Le Cadre harmonisé détermine 5 phases de l’échelle relative à l’insécurité alimentaire : phase 1 : insécurité alimentaire minimale ; phase 2 : sous pression ; phase 3 : crise ; phase 4 : urgence ; phase 5 : famine.
    2. Le Cadre harmonisé a été créé par le Comité permanent inter-Etats de lutte contre la sécheresse dans le Sahel (CILSS) au début des années 2000. Sa mission est d’analyser la sécurité alimentaire. Les quatre organisations signataires ont participé à la dernière rencontre, fin mars 2013 à Bamako, impliquant une quarantaine d’acteurs opérant au Mali - gouvernement, société civile, organisations non gouvernementales et agences internationales. Les experts ont analysé les données actuelles relatives à la sécurité alimentaire et cartographié la situation en cours et fait une projection pour en juin 2013.
    3. Le Cadre harmonisé estime qu’entre 26 et 65 % de la population du nord du Mali, selon les régions, sont menacés par une forte insécurité alimentaire.
    4. Les secteurs prioritaires sous-financés sont : la sécurité alimentaire, l’eau, hygiène et assainissement, la protection, l’éducation, la santé, et le soutien des moyens d’existence. L’Appel global consolidé (CAP) de 410 millions de dollars n’est financé qu’à hauteur de 106 millions, tandis que 90 millions de dollars ont contribué à des projets au Mali hors Appel.

    Contacts

    Pour de plus amples informations, merci de bien vouloir contacter :


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    Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid department
    Country: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Gambia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal
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    Key messages

    • Food and nutrition crises are becoming more frequent in the Sahel region. Millions of people now face food insecurity and malnutrition on an almost permanent basis, regardless of whether harvests are good. To prevent the Sahel being hit by crisis year after year, much greater attention needs to be given to building the resilience of the most vulnerable population groups – for example, by making basic services available to mothers and their children during the first two years of their lives, or by ensuring that aid programmes prioritise assistance to the poorest people.

    • Increasing people’s resilience to future stresses and shocks has to be based on a thorough understanding of what makes them vulnerable so that aid can be better targeted and more effective.

    • Bridging the gap between humanitarian and development aid, and linking up with the efforts of affected governments is a precondition for ending the vicious cycle of nutrition crises in the Sahel. The European Commission has recently issued two new policy papers which will shape the EU's approach in this regard - one on Resilience in October 2012 and one on Nutrition in March 2013.

    • At the beginning of the 2013 ‘lean season’, the humanitarian situation is again critical in several areas of the Sahel despite a reportedly good harvest. Food prices continue to be high, insecurity in northern Mali and Nigeria persists, and crops in Nigeria, the region’s granary, have been wiped out by floods.

    • Acute malnutrition rates continue to exceed critical levels throughout the region.
    Emergency assistance is needed to support public services as a measure of crisis response but also to promote durable solutions.


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    Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid department
    Country: Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan (Republic of)
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    Key messages

    • Ethiopia will continue to face recurrent drought due to climate change. Short term emergency interventions remain critically important in saving lives, however these need to be supported by medium to long term actions that are geared towards boosting the resilience, livelihoods, and food security of the affected communities.

    • Even though official figures show a slight decrease in the number of people in need of food assistance (from 3.76 million in 2nd half of 2012 to 2.5 million in the 1st half of 2013), some areas are still in critical need of humanitarian assistance such as Afar, West and East Haraghe or Bale zones.

    • Ethiopia is hosting close to 390 000 refugees; arriving from neighbouring countries, mainly from Somalia. The influx of refugees requires constant monitoring and adaptation of the refugee programme, including exercises verifying the number of refugees as well as, if necessary, the opening of additional refugee camps.


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    Source: Deutsche Welthungerhilfe e. V. (German Agro Action), Action Contre la Faim, Solidarités International, Oxfam
    Country: Mali

    Northern Mali will descend to emergency levels (1) of food insecurity in less than two months if the security situation and humanitarian access to vulnerable communities do not improve, warned four international aid agencies today following the analysis of experts from the Harmonized framework (2).

    As many as two thirds (3) of people from the three northern regions of Mali (Gao, Timbuktu and Kidal) are already living in crisis levels of food insecurity, and some parts of Kidal are already at emergency levels.

    Market surveys carried out recently by Action Against Hunger (ACF), Solidarités International, Welthungerhilfe and Oxfam, operating in these regions, show that prices for some basic foodstuff have spiralled since January 2013, increasing by up to 36 per cent in the Gao region, 30 per cent in the Timbuktu region, and 25 per cent in the Kidal region. In Kidal, an area where 94 per cent of households have to buy their food from local markets, two thirds of the traders who would normally supply the markets have left and trade flows of cereals have fallen by 60 per cent. The markets of Timbuktu and Goundam are also not well supplied with staples.

    The ‘lean’ season – when food stocks run low before the next harvest – has started early this year. Herders have not been able to use traditional pastures and water points. At the same time, the value of livestock, particularly cattle and goats, has fallen, making it even harder for pastoralists to buy enough cereals. Alternative employment opportunities are rare and daily labor wages have fallen. In Gao, a day’s work earned about $2.5 this time last year, but today that figure stands at between $1.5 and $2, affecting households purchasing power.

    This worrying situation is mainly due to the consequences of the conflict – including roads being closed or inaccessible, the closure of the Algerian border, and the departure of many traders – added to poor production systems and poor agricultural infrastructure, predating the crisis.

    “While international attention is focused on the UN peacekeeping mission, we risk losing sight of the current alarming humanitarian situation. Parents are already skipping meals in order to feed their children. People in the North will not be able to find enough food to feed their families through the months ahead before the next harvest,” said Philippe Conraud, Oxfam Country Director in Mali. “It is vital that we act before we reach a point of no return about the food situation.”

    According to the Harmonised Framework, the humanitarian assistance planned to date will not cover all the needs. This is due to several priority areas being critically underfunded (4)- as of 24 April 2013, the UN emergency appeal for Mali had only received $106 million of the full amount – as well as difficulties encountered in accessing some areas due to the presence of armed groups, operations by Malian, African and French forces, banditry, presence of mines and other non-exploded ordinance.

    Action Against Hunger (ACF), Solidarités International, Welthungerhilfe and Oxfam are calling on the international community and donors to scale up assistance to the most vulnerable. The four organizations recommend scaling up assistance on food, livelihoods, water and sanitation, nutrition, protection and improvement of access to water and health, and resilience building.

    Signatory Organizations: Action Against Hunger, Oxfam, Solidarités International, Welthungerhilfe.

    Notes to Editors
    1. The five phases of food insecurity according to the Harmonised Framework are: Phase 1: Minimal food insecurity; Phase 2: Stressed; Phase 3: Crisis; Phase 4: Emergency; Phase 5: Famine. (See attached map)
    2. The Permanent Interstate Committee for Drought Control in the Sahel (Comité permanent Inter-Etats de Lutte contre la Sécheresse dans le Sahel, CILSS) developed the Harmonised Framework (Cadre Harmonisé) in the early 2000s. It is mandated to analyse the food security situation. Action Against Hunger, Solidarités International, Welthungerhilfe and Oxfam participated in the Harmonised Framework meetings in Bamako in late March 2013. Around 40 stakeholders were involved in the meetings including government, civil society, non-governmental organisations and international agencies. Experts analysed current data on food security and produced maps on current situation and projected situation in June 2013.
    3. Between 26 to 65 per cent of the population depending on the regions in northern Mali are currently under threat of crisis levels of food insecurity according to the Harmonised Framework.
    4. Priority sectors underfunded are food security and livelihoods, water, sanitation, hygiene, protection, education and health and support to livelihoods. The Consolidated Appeal Process (CAP) for Mali is only funded at $106 millions of the total $410 million requested, while $90 million have contributed to projects outside this Appeal.

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