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ReliefWeb - Updates

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    Source: Guardian
    Country: Niger, World

    Those working to combat food insecurity in the Sahel need to "get their thinking together" and realise that it could take several years for the poorest families to recover from three successive regional droughts and hunger crises, says the new regional co-ordinator of the World Food Programme (WFP).

    Read the full report


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, Niger
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    PRIORITÉS IDENTIFIÉES

    Eau, hygiène et assainissement

    Depuis le début de l'année, 71 428 personnes ont bénéficié d'un accès permanent à une source améliorée d'eau potable et 454 567 personnes ont eu un accès temporaire à l'eau chlorée potable.
    Environ 15% des 1 222 centres de santé du pays bénéficient de la présence d’acteurs fournissant un appui pour le « paquet minimum EHA ». En préparation au risque d’épidémie de choléra lié à la prochaine saison des pluies, des partenaires EHA ont été identifiés dans tous les districts sanitaires où le risque est considéré comme «extrême», «élevé» ou «moyen».

    Education

    Dans les régions de Gao et Tombouctou, 385 écoles ont rouvert, soit 37% des 1 030 établissements. Elles accueillent 2 009 enseignants et 86 256 élèves. Dans l’ensemble du pays, des kits scolaires ont été distribués à 39 892 enfants ; 2 783 enseignants travaillant dans les zones en situation de conflit ou de post-conflit ont été formés à des thèmes relatifs à l’éducation en situation d’urgence. Des approches pédagogiques adaptées sont essentielles pour permettre aux enfants dont l’accès à l’éducation a été interrompu de rattraper le temps perdu.


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    Source: ECOWAS
    Country: Mali

    Les troupes de la Mission internationale de soutien au Mali sous conduite africaine (MISMA) sont partout, dans toutes les régions et localités maliennes qui ont été libérées et aussi dans les localités situées au nord du fleuve Niger.

    Telle est la substance du point de presse hebdomadaire animé le mercredi 8 mai 2013 à Bamako, au Mali, par le porte-parole militaire de la MISMA, le colonel Yao Adjoumani, avec à ses côtés son homologue de l’armée malienne, le capitaine Modibo Naman Traoré.

    Selon le colonel Adjoumani, les troupes de la MISMA contrôlent et sécurisent actuellement Ménaka, Assongo, Tombouctou, Goundam et Gao, où vient d’être implanté l’état-major avancé de la Mission. EIles sont également présentes à Kidal, Tessalit et dans les zones de Nara, Léré et Diabaly. Les forces de la MISMA sont en train de sécuriser actuellement la localité de Ber, conjointement avec les Forces armées maliennes, a-t-il souligné, avant d’ajouter qu’au sud de la boucle du Niger, outre les localités de Koro et Sévaré, les soldats africains viennent d’être redéployés à Gossi et Douentza.

    La mission essentielle des troupes africaines dans ces différentes régions et localités est de protéger la population et d’empêcher le retour des «terroristes» ou des attaques suicides, comme celle perpétrée le 4 mai 2013 dans la région de Gao dans laquelle deux soldats maliens ont trouvé la mort, a-t-il précisé. Le colonel Adjoumani a profité de l’occasion pour présenter les condoléances de la MISMA aux familles des victimes ainsi qu’à celles des deux militaires nigérians tués lors du crash de leur alpha jet, alors qu’ils se rendaient dans la zone de Gao pour une patrouille de routine.

    L’éternelle question de Kidal et le désarmement du Mouvement national pour la libération de l’Azawad (MNLA) étaient également au menu des échanges entre les hommes de médias et le porte-parole militaire de la MISMA. Pour le colonel Yao Adjoumani, la situation de Kidal est délicate. «Le problème du MNLA est politique. La MISMA n’est pas mandatée pour désarmer le MNLA. Sa mission est de soutenir les forces armées maliennes partout où elles se trouvent », a-t-il fait savoir.

    Concernant la transformation de la MISMA en une Mission multidimensionnelle intégrée des Nations Unies pour la stabilisation au Mali (MINUSMA), opérationnelle pour compter du 1er juillet 2013, le colonel Adjoumani a affirmé que le sujet fait actuellement l’objet d’une réunion de planification à Addis-Abeba, en Ethiopie, entre la MISMA, la CEDEAO, l’Union africaine et les Nations unies.

    Un autre sujet abordé par le conférencier a porté sur la situation humanitaire. Il a indiqué que selon le ministère malien des Affaires humanitaires, à la date du 25 avril 2013, 14.400 personnes déplacées en provenance de certaines régions du Centre-Mali et des refugiés venus du Burkina Faso, du Niger et de la Mauritanie ont regagné pour la plupart les régions de Gao et de Tombouctou sans assistance humanitaire. «Ce nombre s’ajoute aux 15.000 retours volontaires dans les mêmes régions et dans les mêmes conditions que je vous annonçais il y a deux semaines », a-t-il conclu.

    Il a terminé son point de presse en invitant la population malienne, à travers un message de sensibilisation, à coopérer étroitement avec la MISMA et à l’aider dans sa mission. «La MISMA est là pour les Maliens et non contre les Maliens. Elle est pour la paix au Mali. Elle a besoin de la collaboration et de la coopération de tous. Aidons la MISMA à nous aider en signalant toutes personnes ou tous objets suspects autour de nous, tous mouvements inhabituels dans nos quartiers, toutes caches d’armes, de munitions, d’explosifs, de bombes, etc.», dit en substance ce message.


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    Source: NATO Civil-Military Fusion Centre
    Country: Iraq, Mali, Syrian Arab Republic
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    This document provides complex coverage of global events from 30 April – 06 May 2013 with hyper-links to source material highlighted in blue and underlined in the text. For more information on the topics below or other issues pertaining to events in the region, contact the members of the Complex Coverage Team or visit our website at www.cimicweb.org

    INSIDE THIS ISSUE

    Iraq 1
    Mali 2
    Syria 3
    IED/Demining 4


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, Niger
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    WASH

    Since the beginning of the year 71,428 persons have received permanent access to an improved potable water source and 454,567 people received temporary access to potable chlorinated water. Roughly 15 per cent of the 1,222 Health centers throughout the country have a presence of WASH actors providing support for the WASH minimum package. In anticipation of the risk of cholera epidemic associated to the approaching rainy season, WASH partners have been identified in all areas (District Sanitaires) for which the risk has been identified as ‘extreme’, ‘elevated’ or ‘medium’.

    Education

    In Timbuktu and Gao regions, 385 schools have reopened , or 37 per cent of the 1,030 schools. They host 2,009 teachers and 86,256 students. Across the country, school kits were distributed to 39,892 students and 2,183 teachers working in conflict or post-conflict areas were trained on issues related to education in Emergency. Adapted pedagogical approaches are key to ensure that school-aged children which have had their access to education interrupted are able to recuperate the time lost outside of school.


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    Source: UN Children's Fund
    Country: Burkina Faso, Mali
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    Highlights

    • To date 49,975 Malian refugees are registered in Burkina Faso, 54.3% of them are children between 0-17.

    • The number of new SAM admissions from January to mid-March 2013 amounts 11,141 children, representing 9.5% of annual target.

    • From January to April 2013, a total of 1,668 cases of measles with 5 deaths (mortality rate 0.3%) were reported in Burkina Faso out of which 509 cases and one death were identified in Dori, Gorom Gorom, Sebba and Djibo districts in the Sahel region. For now, the incidence of meningitis in Burkina Faso lies at 1,679 cases. In comparison to the previous year, which experienced 4,814 officially registered cases at the same period, the incidence rate this year is 66% lower. Furthermore, the country is getting out of the high-transmission meningitis period and will most likely not experience an outbreak in 2013. There have been no reports of cholera since the beginning of the year.

    • 7,338 children (3,911 girls and 4,427 boys) have regularly participated in activities organised at Child Friendly Spaces.


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    Source: Government of Norway
    Country: Norway, Somalia

    “Somalia is in a critical phase. Norway aims to support that the progress made so far is not reversed. That is why we are increasing our development assistance by NOK 150 million and strengthening our cooperation with the Government of Somalia,” said Minister of International Development Heikki Eidsvoll Holmås.

    Mr Holmås is today taking part in the international Somalia Conference 2013 in London. The conference is co-hosted by President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, and British Prime Minister David Cameron.

    “The conference focuses primarily on security and political stability, both of which are absolutely essential if Somalia is to recover. Norway will also be a major contributor to humanitarian efforts and development assistance in the country. After two decades of civil war, the situation for the people of Somalia is extremely difficult. The country’s health situation is among the worst in the world, education programmes are very poor and 70 % of young people in the country are unemployed. Somalis in exile need to have a viable society they can return to,” said Mr Holmås.

    A recent UN report revealed that famine and a lack of food security led to almost 260 000 people losing their lives in Somalia between October 2010 and April 2012, which is twice the number that were previously thought to have died.

    “A shortage of food caused by conflicts, climate change, increased food prices and extreme poverty remains a huge problem in the country. Over 1.7 million people in Somalia are in need of humanitarian assistance, and over 215 000 children are acutely malnourished and risk dying of hunger. Norway is already making a major contribution to humanitarian efforts in Somalia. We are now substantially increasing our development assistance to the country with a view to making the people of Somalia better equipped to deal with crises, and achieving positive social development in line with the Somali Government’s priorities,” Mr Holmås said.

    In 2012, Norway’s total assistance to Somalia and Somali refugees amounted to around NOK 360 million. In 2013, Norway’s development assistance and transitional funding to the country will be increased by around NOK 150 million, making total Norwegian assistance to Somalia over NOK 500 million.

    Press contact: Communications Adviser Astrid Sehl, mobile phone + 47 92284752, E-mail astrid.sehl@mfa.no


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    Source: IRIN
    Country: Côte d'Ivoire, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Sierra Leone

    DAKAR, 10 May 2013 (IRIN) - Academics and government, military and civil society representatives gathered for a conference in the Senegalese capital this week to assess the interplay between development and violent extremism in West Africa, with some participants suggesting that underdevelopment, marginalization and weak governance create a breeding ground for militancy.

    While local factors in West African and Sahel countries have contributed to extremist violence, the rise of global jihad in the wake of the US-led "war on terror" since 9/11 has also played a part in spreading radical militancy in the region.

    "In the Sahel, there is a combination of bad governance, poverty, insecurity as well as several internal and external factors [that contribute to extremist violence]," said Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah, head of the Centre for Security Strategy in the Sahel and the Sahara, at the opening of the 6-10 May Dakar conference.

    "The Sahel has provided an ideal ground for extremist violence to take root and spread beyond national borders," he said.

    The region has a history of instability. Since the first post-independence coup in West Africa that toppled Togo's founding president in 1963, it has seen a string of coups, some of which have sparked civil wars.

    West Africa is also one of the world's most impoverished regions despite its natural resources. Seven West African countries occupy the bottom 10 places in the UN Human Development Index.

    Poor political and resource governance have often led to explosions of violence by disgruntled segments of society, and a number of studies have linked bad governance to insecurity in West Africa.

    For example, Mali's Tuareg have been fighting perceived marginalization by the central government and demanded an autonomous homeland in the country's north. Following the March 2012 coup in the capital Bamako, the Tuareg National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad seized towns from government troops in the north, but was soon driven out by militant Islamist groups.

    Nigeria's increasingly violent Boko Haram militia, which wants an Islamic state, should be seen as a reaction the government's entrenched corruption, abusive security forces, strife between the disaffected Muslim north and Christian south, and widening regional economic disparity, according to the Council on Foreign Relations.

    Some observers stress the local aspect. Militant Islam in Africa, while linked to broader ideological currents, is mainly driven by the local context, with Islamist groups emerging, evolving and reacting to immediate local concerns, University of Florida's Terje Ostebo, argued in a November 2012 paper published by the Africa Centre for Strategic Studies (ACSS).

    "The Malian government's failure to consistently invest [in] and maintain a strong state presence in the north. created an enabling environment for the expansion of Islamic militancy and the escalation of violence in this region," said Ostebo, an assistant professor at the university's Centre for African Studies (ACSS) and the Department of Religion.

    Marginalization

    "Poverty and underdevelopment and a sense of marginalization and exclusion that comes from lack of governance, particularly at the local level, are seen as drivers associated with violent extremism," Benjamin Nickels, an assistant professor with the ACSS, told IRIN.

    "Supporting development is a long-term approach to undermining drivers associated with violent extremism," he added.

    "You do have a number of underlying factors that make certain regions particularly vulnerable to violent extremism and extremist ideologies, and then you have a number of factors that trigger violence. Amongst these factors there is an underlying economic dimension that often gets missed," said Raymond Gilpin, the ACSS academic dean.

    Poverty, unemployment and socioeconomic deprivation partly explain the rise of Islamist movements - violent and non-violent - argued Ostebo.

    "There are other factors of extremist violence. However, it is easier for militant groups to recruit unemployed youth who see no future for themselves, than those who are in employment. The more young people are able to be employed the less chances there are that they can be recruited by militant groups," said Gilles Yabi of the International Crisis Group.

    "Development is part of the measures against extremist violence. But we are already in a situation [in West Africa] where underdevelopment is so deep that reversing it is very difficult," he told IRIN.

    Ould-Abdallah cited other factors such as West Africa's wide geographical area, weak public institutions and people's and governments' loyalty to tribe and clan rather than the nation state as also contributing to crime and extremist violence in the region.

    In a bid to end insurgencies, Nigeria and Mali have attempted negotiated settlements, but they have also resorted to the use of force, which is limited in resolving the fundamental causes of rebellion. Repression by governments or external forces can cause Islamist militants to fight for their very existence and at the same time deepen perceptions of state illegitimacy, Ostebo warned.

    Spillover

    The French-led intervention in Mali has dislodged the Islamist rebels from their strongholds, but triggered fears that the fleeing militants could destabilize countries in the region from where they hail, target foreign nationals in neighbouring countries and even win the sympathy of other extremist militia.

    The January attack on an Algerian gas plant is believed to have been in retaliation for the French military drive in Mali. Nigerian troops heading for Mali as part of an African intervention force came under attack by Boko Haram-linked militants in January.

    On 7 May, Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb posted a video message calling for attacks on all French interests across the world for its intervention in Mali.

    Nigeria has teamed up with its neighbours to form a multi-national force to counter Boko Haram.

    "The priority for Sahel right now is to help resolve the Mali crisis. After Côte d'Ivoire, Liberia and Sierra Leone, West Africa does not need another protracted crisis," said Ould-Abdallah.

    ob/cb


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    Source: Terre des hommes Foundation Child Relief
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea, Mali, Togo

    West Africa is characterized by a considerable population mobility, most especially of the young. Many of them quit their home villages for the big cities or even neighbouring countries, seeking better economic perspectives for themselves and their families. However, most often these children find themselves faced with exploitation and abuse. Terre des hommes has decided to tackle the problem head on by launching an important project whose aim is to offer these unaccompanied migrant youngsters a truly protective environment.

    Developed in five countries in the region – Togo, Benin, Burkina Faso, Mali and Guinea – the project is financed by the European Union and unites all the parties linked to this problem. In the first place, the communities concerned must be able to respond more effectively to the problems of child protection in a context of migration, then powerful advocacy must be carried out with the political deciders so as to improve their know-how and to develop their capacity for protection, and finally, to make the general public aware of the risks run by non-accompanied migrant youngsters by mobilizing the various local partners and the media.

    In terms of results, at a local level Terre des hommes hopes to improve the quality and availability of community-based protective areas through development by local actors of 15 projects that directly affect 3,000 children. For this, sessions of discussions, information about the protection of migrant youngsters and awareness-making on the subject will be organized in communities at the locations of departure, transit or destination. At a national level, field teams will work with the authorities to highlight the effectiveness of their plan of action for protection with the organization of national advocacy conferences, and by giving training courses and awareness heightening on the issue to journalists. Finally, at a regional level, various teams are aiming to mobilize the civil society in the countries of intervention and to strengthen the partnerships and solidarity between States, as well as to improve the collaboration between national and transnational police forces.

    The youngster as an active agent for his own protection

    To carry out the various projects, the approach preferred consists of including the youngster in the entire process. All too often ignored, the young person is not seen here as a passive victim but rather as an agent active for his own protection. Tdh is convinced that he must be given priority in drawing up community projects for his own defence.

    At the end of the 36 months the project is planned for, Tdh hopes to have been able to support more than 11,000 youngsters, and also to see emerge from West Africa a true awareness of the necessity of protecting non-accompanied migrant youngsters.

    Partners of the project: ESAM (Benin), ETD (Togo), AEJTB (Burkina Faso), SABOU-Guinée (Guinea), ENDA-MALI (Mali), Service Social International (SSI) and Réseau Afrique de l’Ouest pour la protection des enfants (RAQ) (West African Network for Child Protection)


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    Source: Terre des hommes Foundation Child Relief
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea, Mali, Togo

    L’Afrique de l’ouest est marquée par un phénomène important de mobilité des populations, tout particulièrement chez les jeunes. Beaucoup d’entre eux décident de quitter leur village d’origine pour les grandes villes voire pour les pays voisins à la recherche de perspectives économiques plus réjouissantes pour eux-mêmes et leur famille. Pourtant, ces enfants se retrouvent le plus souvent confrontés aux dangers de l’exploitation et des abus. Terre des hommes a décidé de prendre le problème à bras le corps en lançant un important projet dont le but est d’offrir aux mineurs migrants non-accompagnés un véritable environnement protecteur.

    Développé dans cinq pays de la région, le Togo, le Bénin, le Burkina Faso, le Mali et la Guinée, le projet financé par l’Union européenne rassemble tous les acteurs liés à cette problématique. En premier lieu, il faut permettre aux communautés concernées de répondre plus efficacement aux problèmes liés à la protection des enfants dans un contexte de migration, puis effectuer un fort plaidoyer auprès des décideurs politiques afin de renforcer leurs connaissances et développer leurs capacités de protection, et enfin, sensibiliser l’opinion publique quant aux risques encourus par les enfants migrants non-accompagnés en mobilisant les différents partenaires locaux et les médias.

    En terme de résultats, à l’échelle locale, Terre des hommes espère améliorer la qualité et la disponibilité des espaces communautaires de protection au travers de l’élaboration par les acteurs locaux de 15 projets qui toucheront directement 3000 enfants. Dans les faits, des sessions de discussions, d’information et de sensibilisation autour de la protection des enfants migrants seront organisées auprès des communautés dans les localités de départ, de transit et de destination. A l’échelle nationale, les équipes de terrain vont œuvrer auprès des autorités pour accentuer l’efficacité de leur plan d’action de protection avec l’organisation de conférences nationales de plaidoyer et la formation et la sensibilisation de journalistes à la problématique. Enfin, au niveau régional, les différentes équipes ont pour but de mobiliser la société civile au sein des pays d’intervention et de renforcer les partenariats et la solidarité entre les Etats, ainsi que d’améliorer la collaboration entre les polices nationales et transnationales.

    L’enfant acteur de sa propre protection

    Pour mener à bien les différents projets, l’approche privilégiée consiste à inclure l’enfant tout au long du processus. Bien trop souvent ignoré, l’enfant est vu ici non pas comme une victime passive mais comme un véritable acteur de sa protection. Tdh est en effet convaincue qu’il doit être un acteur prioritaire dans l’élaboration des projets communautaires qui visent à sa propre défense.
    Au terme des 36 mois sur lesquels s’étend le projet, Tdh espère avoir pu soutenir plus de 11'000 enfants mais également avoir pu faire émerger en Afrique de l’ouest une véritable prise de conscience de la nécessité de protéger les enfants migrants non-accompagnés.

    Partenaires du projet : ESAM (Bénin), ETD (Togo), AEJTB (Burkina Faso), SABOU-Guinée (Guinée), ENDA-MALI (Mali), Service Social International (SSI) et Réseau Afrique de l’Ouest pour la protection des enfants (RAQ)


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

    INTIKANE, Niger, 7 mai (HCR) – La longue colonne d'animaux, flanquée d'hommes perchés sur leur selle, se dirige vers l'est en direction de nouveaux pâturages à une allure régulière, soulevant des nuages de poussière sur leur passage.

    Cela peut ressembler à une scène de Western, mais ce drame se joue à des milliers de kms de l'autre côté de l'océan, au Niger, en Afrique de l'ouest. La distribution comprend 800 animaux, des nomades touaregs originaires du Mali et l'agence des Nations Unies pour les réfugiés.

    Fin avril, la caravane, composée de chameaux, de bétail, d'ânes, de chèvres, de moutons et de trois chevaux, a quitté le site de réfugiés d'Agando, situé à 10 kms environ de la frontière avec le Mali, pour un périple de trois jours vers Intikane, une vaste région où les Touaregs pourront vivre dans un espace ouvert et mener leur style de vie nomade traditionnel en toute sécurité.

    L'ensemble des 8 000 réfugiés d'Agando et du village voisin de Chinourawen ont fui vers l'ouest du Niger avec leurs animaux pour échapper aux combats qui ont éclaté au Nord Mali début 2012 ou en raison de l'insécurité constante ou par crainte des représailles depuis janvier 2013, date à laquelle une contre-attaque dirigée par les forces françaises a repoussé les forces rebelles.

    La décision du gouvernement du Niger de déplacer les Touaregs vers Intikane a été motivée par des raisons de sécurité : Agando est situé à seulement 10 kms de la frontière, dans une région qui demeure instable. C'est aussi un moyen de leur permettre de mener une vie plus normale.

    « Aider les réfugiés à déplacer leurs animaux leur permettra de maintenir leurs moyens de subsistance et de continuer à vivre comme des pasteurs et des nomades plutôt que de finir dans un camp de réfugiés à dépendre d'une aide extérieure », fait remarquer Karl Steinacker, Représentant du HCR au Niger.

    Les Touaregs ont été impliqués dans le processus de transfert dès le début. « Nous avons organisé plusieurs réunions et défini un itinéraire », affirme Mouhamoud Abdoulaye Al Kan Afi. « Nous avons pu aller voir Intikane. Ce lieu nous convient, ainsi qu'à nos animaux », ajoute ce réfugié, ancien respecté et l'un des principaux gardiens de troupeau, qui monte son cheval comme un jeune homme.

    Le HCR a associé un partenaire local, Akarass, pour aider à organiser cette caravane qui constitue une opération logistique importante. « Nous avons pensé à tous les détails : des points d'eau le long de la route et des vivres pour les gardiens de troupeau », explique Oumarou Danni Saadou, employé de l'ONG. Il ajoute que des gendarmes à dos de chameaux ont assuré la sécurité.

    La santé des animaux a été surveillée par un vétérinaire et, à leur arrivée à Intikane, tous les animaux ont été vaccinés pour éviter la propagation de maladies au bétail appartenant à la communauté locale.

    Le train d'animaux s'étendant sur trois kms a été chaleureusement accueilli par la communauté locale à son arrivée à Intikane. « Les réfugiés et leurs animaux sont les bienvenus. Ce qui leur est arrivé pourrait arriver à tout le monde », déclare Alghadawi Ilhouda, le chef du village, situé dans une zone aride de broussailles et de sable. « Nous devons les soutenir en partageant notre eau et nos pâturages », ajoute-t-il.

    Certains bergers maliens ont été ravis de découvrir qu'il y avait un puits à Intikane, actionné par des pompes et des générateurs puissants rénovés grâce au HCR. « C'est comme de l'eau de pluie », déclare un réfugié dénommé Omar Mouhamadou. Le puits, d'une profondeur de 700 mètres, bénéficie également à la communauté d'accueil dans cette partie de la région de Tahoua au Niger, où la région du Sahel rejoint le Sahara.

    Le gouvernement du Niger, avec l'aide du HCR, prévoit d'amener d'autres communautés de réfugiés vers des pâturages plus sûrs situés davantage à l'intérieur du pays au cours des prochaines semaines. Mais contrairement aux animaux et à leurs gardiens, la plupart des réfugiés feront le voyage à bord de convois organisés par le partenaire du HCR, l'Organisation internationale pour les migrations.

    Le HCR protège et assiste quelque 50 000 réfugiés maliens au Niger. Ils font partie des plus de 175 000 réfugiés maliens dans les pays voisins, dont le Burkina Faso et la Mauritanie.

    Par Bernard Ntwari à Intikane, Niger


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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Mali, Niger, Nigeria
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    Record rise in cereal prices undermines household food security

    KEY MESSAGES

    • Increasing millet and maize prices, already well aboveaverage in April, will overshoot seasonal norms between now and the height of the lean season and the end of Ramadan in late August due to market disruptions triggered by last year’s floods in Nigeria. Central and Eastern Niger will be most affected.

    • Despite anticipated price increases, household incomes are generally considered average to good this year, and should allow households to purchase sufficient cereal to meet food needs. Thus, even without assistance, most poor households should be able to meet their basic food and nonfood needs and will experience only IPC Phase 1 Minimal levels of acute food insecurity.

    • In Diffa, higher prices, the destruction of pepper crops, and affect of conflict in Nigeria on cross border livestock trading are likely to expose poor households in agropastoral and farming areas of this region region to IPC Phase 2 Stress levels of acute food insecurity between July and September.


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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Mali
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    Unstable security conditions continue to affect food security in northern Mali

    KEY MESSAGES

    • As of April 10th , only 28 percent of the consolidated appeal for humanitarian assistance has been funded, complicating the efficient delivery of assistance to northern populations. Northern pastoral areas will face “Crisis” levels of food insecurity (IPC Phase 3) during the pastoral lean season (April through July).

    • As of July, when milk production and livestock body conditions typically improve, even limited humanitarian assistance programs could reduce crisis conditions to IPC Phase 2 Stress levels.
      Assistance efforts and the re-opening of local markets will keep pastoral populations in northern rice-growing and agropastoral areas in Phase 2 Stress throughout the outlook period.

    • The limited livelihoods of poor households in northern rice-growing and agropastoral areas, compounded by food prices, rules out any improvement in the food security situation, particularly with these households becoming increasingly and seasonally dependent on local markets. Humanitarian programs will contribute to the maintenance of IPC Phase 2 Stress levels of food insecurity in these areas throughout the outlook period. With the more or less normal behavior of food security drivers, southern populations will continue to experience only “Minimal” levels of food insecurity (IPC Phase 1).

    • Trade between the southern and northern parts of the country has improved with the official re-opening of major roads connecting the north with the south and a resumption of trade with neighboring countries like Niger and Burkina Faso. Trade volumes from Algeria are less than normal, but remain steady. At 20 to 30 percent above the five-year average, food prices in the north prevent adequate food access, particularly in pastoral areas suffering from the slump in livestock sales and deteriorating pastoral conditions. Gradual economic improvements are not likely to result in major livelihoods change during the outlook period, which will be marked by the return of displaced populations.


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Mali
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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Mali, Mauritania
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    Minimal food insecurity in most rural areas

    KEY MESSAGES

    • Though poor households in most parts of the country have depleted their household cereal stocks, smooth trade flows (domestic, cross-border, and imports) should ensure good nationwide and region-wide food availability, at least through the end of June. Thus, there should not be any visible deterioration in household food security between April and June (Figures 1 and 2).

    • Good pastoral conditions, favorable terms of trade for livestock/cereal, and access to expected average levels of income from farm labor as of June will keep food insecurity at IPC Phase 1 Minimal for most poor households through the end of September (Figure 3).

    • However, poor households in southeastern rainfed agriculture zone (Bassikounou department) and, to a lesser extent, in northwestern agro-dominant agropastoral zone (Aleg department) and northern areas suffering from a protracted drought since last year will remain in IPC Phase 2 Stress between April and June.

    • Growing security problems in northwestern Mali, unleashing a new wave of refugees and limiting the usual flow of food and income to poor Mauritanian households from short-term seasonal labor migration, is creating IPC Phase 2 Stress levels of food insecurity for local and refugee households alike, currently maintained by humanitarian assistance. Any disruption in these assistance programs could weaken conditions between April and June, further heightening food insecurity levels.


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    Source: IFRC
    Country: Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia
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    This report covers the period 01/01/12 to 31/12/12

    Overview

    In line with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies’ (IFRC’s) Strategy 2020, the role of the Southern Africa Regional Office (SARO) is to strengthen the capacity of the National Societies (NSs) to better enable them to deliver services that increase community resilience to disasters and public health emergencies, protect livelihoods and strengthen capacity to recover from disasters and crises, and promote healthy and safe living, social inclusion and a culture of non-violence and peace.

    SARO directly assists nine countries in the region: Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, and Zambia, while also supporting the Zimbabwe Country Office. SARO faced a year of upheaval and change during 2012. At the beginning of the year, the regional representation was down-sized to 20 per cent of its former Johannesburg-based office, and relocated to Gaborone, Botswana. This geographic shift in office location was done for cost-efficiency purposes, but meant that during 2012, much effort was spent on building up the new office’s staff and resources. By the end of 2012, with the appointment of a Regional Representative in May and an established team and network of NS contacts, the operational capacity of the SARO was in a position to focus on the external factors that were forcing an adjustment to the priorities for the office and its relationship with funding partners.

    Donors that had sustained the Federation's work for over a decade had opted to channel support bilaterally through NSs and no longer use the multilateral mechanisms of IFRC. Meanwhile, some NSs also saw a drastic down-sizing of staff, especially the South Africa and Zambia RCS. The year was further marred by institutional crises occurring within a number of NSs, with common themes of unsustainable structures, financial liabilities with the resultant slowdown of service delivery and threat to asset bases, and poor and inadequate donor reporting. Incidents of mismanagement of funds understandably shook donor confidence. As a result, partners withdrew or withheld funds, which impacted on morale of staff and volunteers and the long-standing good reputation of the Movement. Many services simply ground to a halt.

    As the year progressed, internal NS management factors were creating uncertainty and concern about capacity to deliver. SARO began to focus on strategies that would promote NS recovery. The Southern Africa region is prone to natural and human-caused disasters, exacerbated by the effects of climate change. In recent years, the region has suffered recurring devastation from floods, mostly along the Zambezi River. The socio-economic imbalances and shortages of social services and high unemployment has led to urban-based violence, migration and an escalation in the demand for inadequate water and sanitation services.

    IFRC continued to respond to a number of disasters across the region, as detailed in the map contained within this document.


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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Sudan, World

    05/11/2013 14:36 GMT

    N'DJAMENA, 11 mai 2013 (AFP) - Le président tchadien Idriss Déby Itno a ouvert samedi à N'Djamena un sommet réunissant les dirigeants de plusieurs pays d'Afrique de l'ouest, de l'est et centrale confrontés aux défis de la pauvreté et de la sécheresse.

    Le sommet abordera notamment la question du stockage de l'eau dans les pays du Sahel et d'Afrique de l'ouest, "une préoccupation majeure pour nos pays de plus en plus victimes de changement climatique", a estimé M. Déby.

    "Il est absolument nécessaire pour nous d'assurer une meilleure maîtrise de l'eau, d'améliorer la productivité de nos terres arables et de mettre en place des mécanismes de stockage appropriés et efficaces", a-t-il ajouté.

    Trois organisations sous-régionales se sont données rendez-vous à N'Djamena: le Comité permanent inter-Etat de Lutte contre la Sécheresse au Sahel (CILSS), l'Autorité du Bassin du Niger (ABN) et l'Agence Panafricaine de la Grande Muraille verte. Ce sont des "organisations complémentaires visant la gestion efficiente de nos ressources naturelles et pour un développement durable en faveur des populations africaine", a indiqué le président tchadien.

    Le président malien de transition Dioncounda Traoré et son homologue soudanais Omar el-Béchir étaient arrivés dès vendredi soir à N'Djamena, ainsi que le Premier ministre burkinabè Adolphe Tiao. Les autres pays sont représentés par des ministres.

    La Cour pénale internationale (CPI), qui recherche M. Béchir pour crimes de guerre, crimes contre l'humanité et génocide au Darfour (ouest du Soudan), a lancé à plusieurs reprises des appels au Tchad pour faire arrêter le président soudanais.

    Mais depuis le rapprochement politique amorcé en janvier 2010 entre Tchad et Soudan, N'Djamena a régulièrement ignoré les appels de la CPI, et Omar el-Béchir s'est notamment rendu au Tchad lors des deux derniers sommets de la Communauté des Etats sahélo-sahariens (CEN-SAD) en 2010 et en février dernier.

    Le président tchadien a rappelé que ce sommet a lieu au moment où le Mali "vit la plus grave crise de son histoire". "J'exprime ma plus grande solidarité au président Dioncounda Traoré et au peuple frère malien qui a subi des épreuves d'un autre âge", a-t-il dit.

    Evoquant l'engagement militaire du Tchad, qui a perdu au moins 36 soldats dans l'intervention lancée en début d'année contre les groupes islamistes armés occupant le nord du Mali, M. Déby a affirmé: "Mon pays le Tchad se réjouit d'avoir apporté, au prix de sacrifices suprêmes, sa solidarité au peuple frère malien".

    mzd/cl/lbx

    © 1994-2013 Agence France-Presse


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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Burkina Faso, Mali
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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Burkina Faso, Mali
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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Burkina Faso, Mali
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