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ReliefWeb - Updates

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    Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid department
    Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Uganda


    In Somalia, the situation of about 1.1 million IDPs remains a major concern. The government is currently planning to relocate some 78,000 IDPs settled in Mogadishu to new sites outside the city centre by August 2013, starting process to the resettlement or return of all IDPs in Mogadishu (in total, 369,000 people). The situation of the 1 million Somali refugees in the region is also of concern as one speaks about potential repatriation while the conditions are not conducive in Somalia. The country still faces a very fragile security situation and the absence of basic services in the most vulnerable areas of the country, where most refugees come from. There is a clear need to advocate for durable solution to respect international law, and notably the voluntary and dignified nature of return, and to enhance protection and livelihoods activities for refugees and IDPs as well as in the return areas. Furthermore, Somalia is still facing the consequences of repeated years of drought and conflict and, in particular, the consequences of the famine situation in 2011, which caused an estimated 258,000 excess deaths. Malnutrition rates remain above emergency thresholds in vast areas of the country with 45,000 children severely malnourished and over 1 million people considered being acutely food insecure.

    In Ethiopia, the situation of the refugees remains a significant concern at a time when an increasing number of refugees from Eritrea and the two Sudan's are reaching Ethiopia. The full capacity of the camps in the North and West of the country is almost reached and there is already a need to open new camps and plan protection activities. Ethiopia is also affected by small scale disasters triggering the displacement of the population (currently some 78,000 people were newly displaced from January to March 2013 due to drought, conflict and flooding in Afar, Oromia and Somali regions, bringing the current total to 313,000 compared to 245.000 in December 2012). There is a need to reinforce the response capacity of the humanitarian partners. There is also a need to address the continued malnutrition rates and food insecurity in the poorest and most vulnerable areas, where many gaps have been identified in the food assistance, nutrition and health sectors and remain to be addressed (e.g. GAM rates as high as 24.4% have been registered in certain parts of Somali region – Gode zone). Support has to be provided through multisector activities to tackle malnutrition and food insecurity in order to build people's resilience capacity to face further recurrent shocks.

    DG ECHO has mobilised additional EUR 12 million to address the above described situation. EUR 6.6 million will be allocated to Somalia and the remaining EUR 5.4 million to Ethiopia

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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Algeria, Burkina Faso, Chad, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sudan

    Halting land degradation in Niger helps to tackle African desertification

    18 July 2013, Kouloumboutey, Niger – When village people and local authorities in southern Niger won back over one hundred hectares of degraded land, they added one extra piece to a mosaic being laid across the Sahel and the Sahara aimed at tackling desertification and land degradation.

    Ibrahim Dan Ladi, a 47-year-old farmer from southern Niger, remembers that his village of Kouloumboutey used to be surrounded by thick forest.

    The trees protected the villagers against the wind, and their leaves and undergrowth provided good fodder for the animals.

    But the trees started to disappear with El Bouhari, the great famine of 1984-1985, which was caused by drought.

    “Overgrazing and excessive felling did the rest to transform a forest into an area of barren land,” says commander Sidi Sani of Niger’s service for the environment and the fight against desertification.

    Without the protection of trees and grasses, soil easily becomes a “glacis” – a thin cover of arable land at the mercy of wind and rain.

    Working together

    But land degradation can be stopped and precious soil be restored as the example of Kouloumboutey shows. Since last year, the community and Sidi Sani’s service have joined forces to put an end to land degradation around their village.

    Together, they identified the areas to be restored, as well as the vegetation to be planted, so there would be trees and herbage, where the animals can feed themselves.

    The villagers constructed bench terraces to stop water from running off and planted grass and trees to prevent the wind from carrying soil particles away.


    Initiatives like these are crucial across the Sahel and the Sahara, where the lives and livelihoods of millions of rural people are challenged by desertification and land degradation.

    To reverse these trends, African Heads of State and Government endorsed a pan-African initiative called the Great Green Wall for the Sahara and the Sahel Initiative in 2007. It has mobilised more than twenty countries, international organizations, research institutes, civil society and grassroots organizations.

    From an initial idea of erecting a line of trees from east to west through the African desert, the vision for a Great Green African Wall has evolved into a more science-based and integrated approach: a mosaic of interventions adapted to local ecosystems and tailored to the needs of communities.


    Since 2010, FAO in collaboration with the European Union (EU) and the Global Mechanism of the UN’s Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCDD), has been supporting the African Union Commission (AUC) and partner countries to promote and further develop the initiative.

    For example, action plans are in place in Burkina Faso, Chad, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, the Gambia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria and Senegal, while those of Algeria, Egypt, Mauritania and Sudan are in the making.

    On the ground, results are being achieved. In Senegal, the planting of 11 million trees contributed to the restoration of 27 000 hectares of degraded land, while multi-purpose gardens – orchard, kitchen garden and pasture in one - enabled women to increase their income and produce food for their families at the same time.

    Dune fixation is being successfully rolled out in Mauritania. Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger work together with Royal Botanic Gardens of Kew on the production of the most suitable trees, shrubs and herbs to turn degraded land into productive areas.

    But to make the vision of a Great Green Wall a reality, huge challenges remain in terms of political commitment, funding, capacity development, as well as the buy-in of the local population.

    Back to life

    “If we want to win this battle, we need to work with the local population, ” says Sidi Sani in Kouloumboutey.

    In one year, a total of 115 hectares of glacis has been restored.

    “We can see the forest coming back,” says Ibrahim Dan Ladi, adding: “Something that was dead has come to life again.”

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    Source: Agency for Technical Cooperation and Development
    Country: Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Sudan

    Food crisis, drought, chronic hunger, rising food prices: the Sahel region continues yet again to suffer from recurrent food and nutrition crises. After 2005 and 2010, the populations of the Sahel region have had to face yet another crisis in 2012, following a disastrous agricultural season in 2011. The succession of droughts leads to inevitable negative consequences for the capacities of millions of people to meet their essential food needs in the Sahel region of West and Central Africa: drought leads to a reduction in agricultural production and rising food prices on consumption markets which affects the most vulnerable households that are highly impacted by the rise in commodity prices.

    The food crisis of 2012 in the Sahel, in Niger, Chad, Sudan as well as Mali, Mauritania and Senegal, considerably deteriorated the food security situation of some 18 million people and led to a rise in mortality for undernourished children. At the height of the crisis in mid-2012, certain areas of Mauritania, North Mali and the Sahel region in Chad were faced with “extreme” food insecurity, the level before “famine”, while many other areas were considered to be in “critical” situations.

    A major crisis has nevertheless been avoided thanks to humanitarian actors’ mobilisation through emergency interventions. However, despite a good rainy season and a relatively good agricultural and pastoral 2012/2013 season, the negative effects of the food crisis in the Sahel in 2012 are still being felt and lead to difficult access to food and necessary nutriments for the vulnerable populations, especially during the lean period, the time between the stock depletion and the following crop.

    A chronic and structural food crisis

    The Sahel is facing chronic food insecurity and high malnutrition levels, even during good agricultural seasons. In Chad, even though the production levels rose by 91% since the previous year, 2.1 million people are suffering from food insecurity, including 1.5 million in the Sahel region. In the most affected regions such as the Batha region, over 50% of the population cannot cover their daily basic food needs. In Mali, 2 million people are suffering from food insecurity and the maternal and child mortality rate is one of the highest in the world (13th country out of 136).

    The series of crises is a first factor of chronic vulnerability for households in the Sahel region. The frequent food and nutritional crises do not allow vulnerable populations to have enough time to recover and thus contribute to a progressive erosion of their livelihoods. On top of these recurrent food crises, other external shocks also contribute to the reduction of the populations’ resistance capacities. The combination of climate, sanitation, social or economic factors such as the lack of basic infrastructure or services can explain the continued food insecurity that reigns in the Sahel region.

    Political instability in the region (political crises, conflict, violence, population displacement, refugees, etc.) also contribute to render the security and humanitarian situation more complicated and to reduce the possibility to set up long-term solutions.

    These structural and cyclical factors led to the worsening of the general food and nutrition situation for the populations in the region in 2012, whose livelihoods are eroded, and who have to then turn to self-destructive survival methods such as debt, selling their productive assets such as livestock, reducing their daily food intake, consuming poorer seeds or foods, etc. These irreversible methods also impede on the populations’ capacity to recover and prepare for a future crisis.

    Emergency responses help to tackle the effect of a cyclical crisis, and at best to avoid a major catastrophe by bringing short term responses (so-called quick impact projects) to the vital needs of the populations: food distributions or coupons, money transfers, protection of their productive assets, general cash distributions, food fairs, nutrition, as well as water, hygiene and sanitation interventions. However, it is neither sustainable nor desirable to bring an immediate response, with the risk of creating a dependency towards this type of aid.

    Insufficient emergency responses: a mitigated assessment

    Nowadays, the necessity to address the deep, structural causes of malnutrition and food insecurity in a multi-sector and sustainable framework, and not only in terms of emergency responses, lies in the ethos but also in real commitment. Structural development programmes have to be set up to enable the most vulnerable populations to resist to shocks and crises. Fostering resilience is also a way to facilitate long-term development.

    Programmes that link humanitarian emergency relief and development have become scarce and difficult to implement, especially because of the restrictions imposed by certain donors with regards to the financing that limits the timeframe and ambition of the programmes, and thus the possibility of a sustainable response to a crisis.

    Nevertheless, if situations such as the food crisis in the Sahel in 2012 allow decision-makers and donors to respond to such crises, they are also an opportunity to raise the awareness of these international actors to chronic food vulnerability situations. They also encourage using sustainable response mechanisms, by putting forward efficiency, relevance and the impact of the long-term development programmes to support populations in terms of productive capacities and resilience.

    Addressing the causes of chronic vulnerability in order to reinforce resilience capacities

    Responding to food and nutritional crises in a sustainable way underlines the need to tackle the structural causes of malnutrition and food insecurity in the area, as well as to assist populations in terms of their capacities to to deal with chronic stress (climate hazards, hunger gaps) and to shocks (food crises, armed conflicts, refugee influx), that are inevitable for some cases and are intrinsically linked to the recurrent drought in the region.

    The objective is to foresee and prepare for these crises beforehand, to reduce their impact for the most vulnerable communities and to foster recovery after external shocks, by limiting the effects of food crises in the short and middle term in terms of health, income, means, development opportunities and household safety.

    The response must be multi-sector and sustainable by focusing on a response to crumbling livelihoods, community development (rehabilitating infrastructure to relieve them from isolation, setting up and ensuring access to markets, creating groups of food farmers and providing storage buildings or managing natural resources, etc) and to foster infrastructure, and individual and collective capacities in terms of water, sanitation, health, education, etc. (strengthening the health system’s human and institutional capacities, improving access to water by building wells and increasing the network as well as building adapted infrastructure, etc).

    This integrated approach includes improving food security (agriculture support, provision of seeds, tools and agricultural inputs, improving farming techniques, irrigation, diversification of livelihoods, livestock support and recapitalisation, distribution of fodder during the pastoral lean period, animal health, improved breeding techniques, etc..), supporting households’ economic recovery after a shock (for reconstruction / recapitalisation of livelihoods while avoiding the use of destructive survival strategies), the contribution to the fight against malnutrition (prevention, screening and management of acute malnutrition, sensitisation to good nutrition and hygiene practices and distribution of hygiene kits, support to health centres to improve the quality of the management of malnutrition and access to healthcare, etc..).

    Resilience is the ability of people to emerge stronger from a crisis situation, or at least without being weakened by a crisis. Being resilient also means to be able to analyze one’s own vulnerability and adapt to a disturbed context (post-crisis). To do so, people must be familiar with the environment and the elements that could impact the future on a daily basis (by knowledge of past crises and recurrent crises). This requires the establishment of monitoring systems for disaster risk reduction and early warning systems to foresee crises that might occur with ad hoc mechanisms, but especially in the long term.

    Financing to tackle resilience

    The Sahel is now in a recovery phase whose outcome will determine the ability of people to cope with shocks created by a difficult environment and climate events that regularly hit the area. Allowing the implementation of programmes to promote resilience among the most vulnerable populations also requires an adaptation from the donors in the management of funds. This is an essential requirement to break the cycle of recurring food crises in the Sahel. We have to make this choice today to contain a predictable humanitarian disaster.

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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Mali

    07/18/2013 15:41 GMT

    Par Cecile DE COMARMOND

    ABUJA, 18 juillet 2013 (AFP) - Les dirigeants ouest-africains ont dit jeudi ne pas avoir de doutes sur la tenue du premier tour de la présidentielle au Mali à la date fixée, affirmant croire en un scrutin "juste, libre et transparent" le 28 juillet malgré les difficultés.

    L'élection prévue dans dix jours est censée rétablir l'ordre constitutionnel interrompu par un coup d'Etat en mars 2012 à Bamako et suit l'intervention de la France et de troupes africaines qui ont chassé les groupes armés qui occupaient le nord du Mali depuis 2012.

    Son organisation a été au centre du 43e sommet ordinaire de la Communauté des Etats d'Afrique de l'Ouest (Cédéao, 15 pays), qui s'est achevé jeudi à Abuja.

    "Les chefs d'Etat et de gouvernements félicitent les autorités maliennes et les partis poltiques (...) pour le consensus sur la tenue de l'élection présidentielle le 28 juillet 2013 ainsi que pour les préparations en cours en vue d'un scrutin juste, libre et transparent", dit le communiqué final.

    "Il n'y a plus de doutes" sur le fait que la présidentielle malienne se tiendra "à la date indiquée" a ajouté le président ivoirien Alassane Ouattara, président en exercice de la Cédéao, dans son discours de clôture.

    Interrogé sur le cas de la ville de Kidal, à 1.500 km au nord-est de Bamako, fief des Touareg et de leur rébellion, M. Ouattara a affirmé à l'AFP que "les élections auront lieu à Kidal comme partout dans le pays".

    Tiébilé Dramé, candidat à la présidentielle malienne et artisan d'un accord de paix entre Bamako et la rébellion touareg, avait pourtant annoncé mercredi le retrait de sa canidature notamment parce que "les conditions de tenue de ce scrutin sont loin d'être réunies" dans cette ville.

    Kidal était occupée depuis février par les rebelles touareg du Mouvement national de libération de l'Azawad (MNLA), jusqu'à leur cantonnement qui s'est fait en parallèle à l'arrivée le 5 juillet de quelque 150 soldats maliens, conformément à un accord de paix signé le 18 juin à Ouagadougou.

    Le président de la Commission électorale nationale indépendante du Mali avait aussi déclaré en juin qu'il serait "extrêmement difficile d'organiser" cette élection à la date prévue tant les "défis à relever" sont encore nombreux.

    Mais le gouvernement malien de transition fait face à une forte pression de la communauté internationale, dont la France, pour maintenir la date du vote.

    "Rien n'est simple dans la vie, mais il faut aller de l'avant (...) et je crois que la classe politique malienne dans son ensemble et les Maliens ont la volonté de faire cette élection pour tourner la page", a déclaré M. Ouattara à l'AFP.


    © 1994-2013 Agence France-Presse

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    Source: Handicap International
    Country: Mali

    Handicap International déploie la prévention au danger des armes et des restes explosifs de guerre au Mali. Elle s'apprête à reprendre la distribution d'aide d'urgence. Aujourd'hui, l'association a besoin de plus de moyens pour renforcer sa réponse à l'urgence et lance un appel à dons.

    Des civils exposés aux armes et aux restes explosifs de guerre

    Depuis maintenant un an, les combats qui ont divisé le Mali en deux ont entrainé une arrivée massive d'armes dans le pays. Ces dernières représentent un danger imminent pour les populations civiles, aujourd'hui régulièrement victimes de balles perdues, d'explosions de mines et d'autres engins explosifs abandonnées derrière eux par les combattants. Face à l'urgence de cette situation, Handicap International a repris dès mercredi 16 janvier ses opérations de sensibilisation au danger de ces armes auprès des populations. Pour Marc Vaernewyck, directeur du programme Mali de Handicap International, « il est crucial d'agir au plus vite, avant que les personnes aujourd'hui déplacées à l'intérieur du pays ne repartent chez elles et ne se trouvent confrontées, sur le chemin du retour aux danger des armes et engins explosifs. Conscientes de l'urgence de reprendre les actions de sensibilisation qu'elles conduisaient depuis le mois d'avril dernier, toutes nos équipes sont mobilisées.»

    Selon Sylvie Bouko, spécialiste des questions liées à la réduction de la violence armée à Handicap International, la configuration du conflit malien est particulièrement dangereuse pour les populations : « Beaucoup d'armes sont entrées, notamment parce qu'elles étaient disponibles après la révolution libyenne. Les groupes de combattants en ont caché une partie, parfois simplement dans des jarres dans les rivières, ou bien les abandonnent en se déplaçant. Les affrontements en cours vont probablement renforcer ce phénomène. Nous sommes inquiets de voir une augmentation significative de blessés parmi les populations civiles qui trouveront ces armes dans les semaines et les mois à venir. »

    Au-delà des armes légères, les mines et restes explosifs de guerre constituent un risque majeur pour les populations. Depuis le début du conflit au début de l'année 2012, plus de 50 civils, dont 31 enfants, ont déjà été blessés par des mines ou des restes explosifs de guerre comme des grenades ou des obus non explosés. «Depuis le mois d'octobre, nous menons des actions de prévention au danger de ces armes. Nous formons des personnes capables de relayer nos messages de sécurité, au sein de leur communauté. Les règles de base sont : ‘ ne pas toucher un objet suspect, rester à distance de l'objet, marquer la zone potentiellement dangereuse et donner l'alerte'. Nous apprenons donc aux populations à repérer et à nous indiquer les engins dangereux. C'est indispensable à la fois pour des questions de sécurité des personnes, pour sécuriser les zones où les populations retourneront s'installer et pour préparer le travail de dépollution que nous souhaitons entamer le plus rapidement possible.»

    Evaluer les besoins et soutenir les populations

    Il est difficile de connaître avec précision l'impact des combats menés actuellement dans le Nord du Mali sur les populations civiles. C'est pourquoi Handicap International met en place en ce moment même des opérations d'évaluation des besoins des personnes déplacées autour de la ville de Mopti. Pour Grégory Doucet, responsable du programme Afrique de l'Ouest, « ces évaluations sont essentielles parce qu'elles vont nous permettre de déployer une réponse adaptée. Selon les besoins, nous effectuerons des distributions d'aide humanitaire et ferons le nécessaire pour que les personnes les plus fragiles soient protégées. »

    La reprise des opérations, suspendues entre le 9 et le 15 janvier dernier, doit permettre de soutenir les populations déplacées. Cependant, pour Grégory Doucet, cela ne suffit pas. « La situation des personnes qui ne se trouvent pas parmi ces déplacés venus s'abriter dans la région de Mopti nous inquiète particulièrement. Nous sommes également inquiets pour les personnes restées plus au Nord, autour de Tombouctou notamment, parce qu'elles étaient trop faibles pour prendre la route. Dans ces zones, l'insécurité nous empêche pour l'instant de reprendre notre action humanitaire et la situation des personnes les plus vulnérables parmi ces populations est très préoccupante. ».

    Près de 230 000 personnes déplacées

    Aujourd'hui, près de 230 000 personnes se sont déplacées à l'intérieur du pays. Elles ont fui leur lieu d'habitation pour aller se mettre en sécurité ailleurs et se retrouvent aujourd'hui privées de leurs moyens de subsistance. Elles doivent absolument être soutenues par des opérations humanitaires jusqu'à leur retour chez elles.

    Ces affrontements, s'ils devaient durer, risquent également de provoquer de nouveaux déplacements de populations vers les pays voisins, comme le Burkina Faso et le Niger. Présente dans ces deux pays, Handicap International, se prépare déjà à ce scénario afin de pouvoir répondre au plus vite à une situation de crise aggravée.

    1 - La moitié nord du pays a été occupée par des groupes armés islamistes – Ansar Eddine, soutenus par AQMI (Al-Qaïda au Maghreb Islamique) – et indépendantistes touaregs – MNLA (Mouvement National de Libération de l'Azawad). 2 - On appelle dépollution, l'opération qui consiste à repérer, signaler, puis neutraliser les restes explosifs de guerre (missiles, grenades, munitions non explosées).3 - Ces distributions comprennent des kits de protection (tente, bâches, matelas...), d'hygiène (savon, seaux...), de cuisine (pastilles de purification de l'eau), mais également des kits scolaires à destination des enfants déplacés.4 - 228 920 personnes, selon OCHA (Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs) le 17 janvier 2013 :

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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Mali

    07/18/2013 17:24 GMT

    by Cecile DE COMARMOND

    ABUJA, July 18, 2013 (AFP) - West African leaders on Thursday insisted Mali's presidential election would be held on July 28 as scheduled despite doubts over whether the crisis-hit nation was ready to organise a vote.

    The polls are seen as crucial to re-uniting the country which remains shaken after a March 2012 military coup and a sweeping offensive by Islamist rebels who captured the entire north before being flushed out with the help of French troops.

    Ivory Coast's President Alassane Ouattara, current chair of the 15-nation West African bloc ECOWAS, said "there are no doubts" the vote would be held on time..

    The polls would take place "on the scheduled date," the Ivorian leader said at the close of an ECOWAS summit in Nigeria's capital.

    The summit's final communique applauded Malian authorities for "the preparations under way aimed at conducting a free, fair and transparent election."

    On Wednesday a presidential challenger who was the chief negotiator in a ceasefire deal with rebels withdrew from the race and filed a court appeal to have the polls postponed.

    "The conditions for a fair vote are not in place," Tiebile Drame told journalists in Mali's capital Bamako.

    He specifically pointed to problems with a voter registry in the northern town of Kidal, which had been at the centre of the fighting.

    Ouattara told AFP that "the elections will be held in Kidal like everywhere else in the country."

    Last month, the head of Mali's election commission said it would be "extremely difficult" to organise elections on July 28.

    "Nothing is simple in life but we must move forward," Ouattara told AFP.

    "I believe the Malian political class, in its entirety, and Malians have the will to hold this election to turn the page," he said.

    The March 2012 coup in Mali toppled president Amadou Toumani Toure and created an opening that allowed groups allied to Al-Qaeda to seize the vast desert north.

    France, which plans to start withdrawing most of the 4,500 troops it sent to Mali, has been pushing for a quick election in the hopes of restoring order.

    The country has been led by a transitional government since the coup.

    Mali's acting president Dioncounda Traore, who is not among the 28 candidates vying to be the next head of state, has also acknowledged that the election would not be perfect, "much less in a country in crisis".

    Some 500,000 thousand people are still displaced after the conflict.


    © 1994-2013 Agence France-Presse

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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Chad, Nigeria, Sudan

    · Le Tchad bénéficiera d’une aide de 8 millions de dollars américains (Journal du Tchad, 17/07/13) · Chad returnees strain aid resources (IRIN, 17/07/13)

    · Venir à bout de la faim au Sahel : le défi de la résilience (ACTED, 18/07/13)

    · Le Chef de l’Etat dissout le DIS (Le Progrès, 15/07/13)

    · Des maisons seront rasées à Walia (Le Progrès, 17/07/13)

    · In Chad, Good Harvest Not Enough to Protect Against Malnutrition (IMC, 12/07/13)

    · ONU : 72 millions de dollars à un fonds d'urgence pour les victimes de catastrophes négligées dans le monde (ONU, 16/07/13)

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    Source: UN Children's Fund, UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Mali

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    Source: UN Children's Fund
    Country: Mali

    Par Alex Duval Smith

    Pour les enfants maliens déplacés par le conflit, les centres d'apprentissage précoce offrent une chance d'apprendre - et de guérir.

    SIRIBALA, Mali, le 8 juillet 2013 - Le conflit dans le Nord du Mali a changé la vie de Fatoumata et Djeneba Touré pour toujours – et pour le mieux.

    Les deux petites filles, âgées de 5 et 3 ans, sont parmi les 527.000 personnes qui ont été déplacées par la crise dans le Nord du Mali, selon le Bureau de la coordination des affaires humanitaires (OCHA). Les personnes déplacées ont perdu leurs entreprises, leurs récoltes et leurs maisons. Beaucoup vivent dans des camps de réfugiés dans les pays voisins, principalement au Burkina Faso, en Mauritanie et au Niger.

    La majorité vit dans les mêmes conditions exigües que les Tourés, chez des parents ou dans des logements loués dans le Centre et le Sud du Mali. La plupart sont des femmes et des enfants.

    Pour les Tourés, la vie était simple dans leur ville natale de Niafunké, près de Tombouctou. « Nous vivions dans une maison avec un mouton, une chèvre et un cheval - un cheval blanc », dit Fatoumata.

    En avril 2012, la famille a été forcée de fuir lorsque des combats ont éclaté entre l'armée et les rebelles séparatistes. Leur maison faisait face à un camp militaire. « Des hommes avec des fusils sautaient par-dessus le mur [dans notre cour], et ils faisaient du bruit, ‘boom, boom'», dit Fatoumata.

    Un apprentissage intégré

    Un an plus tard, en dépit des difficultés financières de leurs parents provoquées par le déplacement, Fatoumata et Djeneba apprécient la vie comme rarement auparavant. Chaque matin, elles mettent leurs tuniques roses et se rendent dans un centre d'apprentissage précoce ici, dans la région de Ségou au Centre-Sud du Mali.

    Le centre est financé par l'UNICEF et construit par Plan Mali, une ONG partenaire. Installé sous un toit de paille dans la cour de la communauté préscolaire de Siribala, c’est l'un des 18 centres de ce type au Mali. Il accueille 60 élèves.

    Un objectif primordial du centre est l'intégration avec la communauté d'accueil. Deux tiers des élèves sont des enfants déplacés, tandis que le reste est composé d’enfants locaux, dont six avec un handicap physique ou mental.

    La participation est gratuite, et tout le monde reçoit un bol de porridge en milieu de matinée - un réel avantage dans un pays où la maternelle est un luxe coûteux généralement réservé aux enfants des familles professionnelles urbaines.

    La directrice de l'école, Kadiatou Sylla, explique que la décision d’accueillir le centre d'apprentissage était très bonne. « Ces enfants sont vraiment traumatisés, dit-elle. Souvent, si vous faites un bruit près des enfants déplacés, ils n'aiment pas ça. Ils s'enfuient. »

    Une enseignante ajoute qu'elle a vu des enfants déplacés courir se cacher au passage d’un avion dans le ciel.

    Répondre aux besoins

    Les jeux éducatifs fournis par l'UNICEF constituent une grande source d’amusement pour les élèves, qui chantent et tapent dans leurs mains. L'accent est actuellement mis sur l'apprentissage des noms d'animaux. Pour s'assurer que la gamme complète des besoins des enfants soit adressée, trois enseignantes du centre - toutes des mères locales - ont été formées pour identifier les signes de traumatisme et aborder ces traumatismes à travers les jeux.

    Le comptable Aliou Sidibé, grand-père de Fatoumata et Djeneba, accueille les fillettes chez lui à Siribala, et approuve le centre d'apprentissage.

    « C’est une grande opportunité pour ces petites filles venant de Niafunké, dit-il. Non seulement elles bénéficient d’une éducation à un très jeune âge, ce qui n'aurait pas été possible dans le Nord, mais elles rencontrent également des enfants de la région, et elle bénéficient d’une attention spécialisée pour adresser leurs traumatismes ».

    Il voit à quel point ses petites-filles ont souffert. « Je les ai vues avoir des cauchemars et sauter hors du lit la nuit. Leur mère a également été traumatisée et n’est pas en mesure de les soutenir de la meilleure façon, car elle est devenue surprotectrice », explique-t-il.

    Une occasion extraordinaire

    Souleymane Traoré, Spécialiste de l’éducation pour l’UNICEF, a contribué à mettre en place 10 centres d'apprentissage précoce, et les considère comme un énorme succès. « Nous avions prévu environ 50 enfants par centre, mais certains d'entre eux accueillent jusqu'à 75 enfants, explique-t-il. Non seulement les enfants reçoivent un repas, ce qui incite les parents à les y envoyer, mais nous avons également formé les enseignants à repérer les signes de malnutrition, de sorte que nous couvrons toutes les bases.»

    Il estime que de fréquenter un centre d'apprentissage précoce pour des fillettes comme Djeneba et Fatoumata peut être un facteur qui améliorera leurs vies.

    « Dans le Nord du Mali, le mariage précoce demeure une réalité pour les filles, et cette éducation précoce représente une opportunité extraordinaire qui pourrait bien avoir un impact positif sur les décisions que leurs parents prendront à leur égard dans les années à venir », explique M. Traoré.

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    Source: Reuters - AlertNet
    Country: Mali, Nigeria, Sudan

    ABUJA, July 18 (Reuters) - Nigeria plans to withdraw much of its 1,200-strong contingent from international peacekeeping missions in Mali and Sudan's Darfur region saying the troops are needed to beef up security at home, sources familiar with the matter said on Thursday.

    Read the full article on Reuters - AlertNet

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  • 07/19/13--01:15: Mali: An Ongoing Crisis
  • Source: Islamic Relief
    Country: Mali

    Islamic Relief calls for international action as extent of humanitarian crisis in northern Mali becomes clear

    As the people of Mali prepare for presidential elections on July 28, a hard-hitting new report from Islamic Relief warns that international action is needed to tackle a hidden humanitarian crisis that has engulfed the north of the country as a result of recent conflict.

    Mali: An Ongoing Crisis says that the 18-month-old conflict – which began with attacks by separatist insurgents, followed by a military coup and subsequently intervention by foreign troops – has exacerbated the impact of drought, closed off the main aid and trade route from the south, shut down weekly markets and most schools and left 1.4 million people dependent on food aid to survive.

    Islamic Relief is urging international donors to increase support for the current UN appeal (which is less than a third funded), invest in peace-building projects in the north and put pressure on Mali’s Government to improve access for aid agencies and revive political reforms that were shelved 15 years ago.

    “Some media coverage has suggested that the crisis caused by the insurgency in the north has been ‘fixed’ by foreign powers but from a humanitarian perspective we are increasingly concerned about the situation,” says Elias Fon, Islamic Relief’s Regional Coordinator for West Africa. “Food and clean water are in very short supply, and urgent action is needed to address these challenges.”

    The report highlights numerous indicators of the severity of the current crisis:

    • Half a million people have been displaced, with 175,000 fleeing to neighbouring countries as refugees

    • 1.4 million people are reliant on food aid, with a further 2 million at risk of needing similar support

    • The north relies on the south for 80% of its food supply, yet the vital Mopti-Douentza-Gao road is closed to traffic

    • 65% of families surveyed by Islamic Relief say there is not enough food in the markets that remain open to meet their needs

    • Access to water is severely limited across the north, and the 6,000 people of Boni City are without any water points after their pumps and generators were pillaged

    • 58% of schools in the north are closed

    • 55% of families in conflict-ravaged Douentza City report that their predominantly earth houses are in poor condition


    For more information about Islamic Relief’s work in Mali or to arrange an interview with Elias Fon, please contact Martin Cottingham (07702-940982,

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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Somalia
    Country: Somalia

    Nairobi (19 July 2013) The United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator (RC/HC) for Somalia, Philippe Lazzarini, has expressed his appreciation to the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) for allocating Somalia US$20 million for underfunded emergencies to support vital humanitarian aid for one year. Somalia was allocated the highest funding out of a total $72 million apportioned to 12 countries categorized as neglected crises around the world. Mr Lazzarini said, “The allocation for Somalia will help fill the gaps in key life-saving interventions in critical humanitarian domains.” By midway through the year, the Consolidated Appeal (CAP) had only received one third of the requested $1.15 billion in funding, with certain humanitarian clusters having received less than a quarter of their requirements.

    “This massive shortfall in funding jeopardizes efforts to build Somalis’ resilience to future shocks such as drought,” Mr Lazzarini warned.

    Despite improvements in overall food security, livelihoods and nutrition situation, 1 million Somalis, including 215,000 children, remain in crisis and are in urgent need of life-saving interventions. A further 1.7 million who recently emerged from crisis could revert without sustained support. Even with the improved conditions, malnutrition rates in Somalia are among the highest in the world, with one in seven children acutely malnourished. Decades of conflict has also left over 1 million people internally displaced, and forced 1 million people to seek refuge in neighbouring countries.

    “The CERF allocation to Somalia is a welcome donation coming at an opportune time to support the most vulnerable men, women and children in Somalia and will ensure that humanitarian organisations continue their work,” Mr. Lazzarini added.

    CERF is funded by voluntary contributions from UN Member States, NGOs, local governments, the private sector and individual donors. In 2013, donors have so far pledged more than $420 million in support of the Fund, bringing the total amount contributed to CERF since March 2006 to more than $3.2 billion.

    For further information, please contact:
    Matthew Conway +254 (0)732 500 010

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    Source: Government of the Netherlands
    Country: Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali, Netherlands, Niger

    Millions of people in the Sahel and the Horn of Africa are still threatened by drought, disappointing harvests, high food prices, climate change and conflict. The Global Humanitarian Assistance report presented today shows that despite all the emergency aid in circulation, vast numbers of people continue to die of starvation. Over the next five years, the Netherlands will therefore invest a total of €40 million in structural solutions to help the local population prevent new crises.

    This new aid package was announced today by Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Lilianne Ploumen.

    ‘Stop-gap solutions, necessary though they may be, are not effective in the long term,’ the minister said. ‘Investment in rural development is urgently needed. Fortunately, there are some hopeful signs. Over the past few years, local farmers have succeeded in boosting their productivity on millions of hectares of less fertile land, using local techniques. We intend to scale up those techniques, with the help of expertise from VU University Amsterdam, businesses and local NGOs.’

    The Dutch contribution will go to the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), with a focus on Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Ethiopia and Kenya. Our aim is to bring the tools for sustainable economic development to farmers – both men and women – who can now barely support themselves. The programme focuses on regions where there is just enough rainfall for farming to be viable. It invests in improving farming techniques, protecting indigenous species of trees, water management, widening access to markets and strengthening the local economy. Beside promoting economic development, the programme will also make the population more resilient to extreme weather patterns caused by climate change. Greater prosperity will also lead to increased security and stability in these vulnerable regions.

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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Mali, Niger, Nigeria


    • La plupart des régions ont effectué leurs semis
    • Nouveaux cas présumés de trafic d’enfants mineures signalés à Maradi
    • Considérer les besoins de chaque groupe dans la réponse humanitaire

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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Mali

    07/19/2013 20:17 GMT

    by Serge Daniel

    BAMAKO, July 19, 2013 (AFP) - Four people have died with many others wounded and the market set ablaze in the northern Malian flashpoint town of Kidal, the government said Friday, a sign of growing tension with key polls nine days away.

    On Thursday night "armed individuals attacked people loyal to Mali in the town of Kidal, killing four, wounding many others and causing damages among the population whose houses and shops were targeted before they were looted and ransacked," a defence ministry statement said.

    "On Friday the central market was set on fire."

    Earlier Friday an official with the UN peacekeeping force in the troubled west African country had said clashes between minority Tuaregs and black Africans in Kidal had left at least one dead overnight.

    The official said the incident was apparently caused by rumours that the army was sending more troops to Kidal ahead of the July 28 presidential poll.

    "There were shots between a Tuareg group accused of being the MNLA (rebel National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad), or close to the MNLA, and the black population," the official said on condition of anonymity.

    Kidal was one of the first major towns to fall when a short-lived March 2012 coup in Bamako created a power vacuum that allowed the MNLA, who had launched their rebellion two months earlier, to conquer most of northern Mali.

    The Tuareg rebel group was soon overpowered by Al Qaeda-linked Islamists. It was allowed to reoccupy Kidal when French-led foreign troops wrested the region back from the Islamist insurgents earlier this year.

    The MNLA, which wants independence for the vast desert region Tuaregs call Azawad, long refused to let government troops enter Kidal, but a deal was reached ahead of this month's crucial election, which aims to restore democratic rule to the country.

    "Some said they heard civilians shouting 'Long live the army, long live Mali,' while others responded 'Long live Azawad'," the UN military source said. "There were shots and a civilian was killed."

    Tensions were further inflamed when a group of armed Tuareg set fire to the town centre market while an unarmed Tuareg group looted shops and homes, the African military source said.

    "The streets are empty and at least 40 civilians have been wounded," he said.

    A source close to Kidal governor Colonel Adama Kamissoko confirmed "the death of a civilian in the violence. Shots were indeed fired."

    "Shops were destroyed, particularly of people who came from Gao," another town in north Mali, the source said, adding that "dozens of civilians took refuge in the military camp."

    He said the situation remained tense in Kidal on Friday.

    Many Malians accuse the light-skinned Tuaregs of being responsible for the chaotic sequence that saw the country split in two for nine months -- with the northern half ruled by groups that imposed an extreme form of Islamic law -- and shattered what had been considered a democratic success story in the restive region.

    A deal reached on June 18 in neighbouring Burkina Faso saw MNLA forces move into barracks as 150 regular troops were deployed to secure Kidal ahead of the vote.

    The decision to hold the first round of the presidential election on July 28, followed by a second round on August 11 if necessary, was taken by the Malian government under pressure from the international community.

    But the presence of the Malian army has stoked tensions in the powder-keg town, with pro- and anti-government protests a regular occurrence and several troops injured by demonstrators.


    © 1994-2013 Agence France-Presse

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    Source: UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali
    Country: Mali

    M. Bert Koenders, Représentant spécial du Secrétaire général des Nations Unies au Mali et Chef de la MINUSMA a rendu visite le 15 juillet au matin aux autorités traditionnelles du district de Bamako, afin de solliciter leur sagesse et leur accompagnement pour le retour de la paix et la réconciliation au Mali.

    S’inscrivant dans le cadre d’une visite de courtoisie, le Représentant spécial du Secrétaire général des Nations Unies s’est successivement rendu à Niaréla, où il a été accueilli par Modibo Niaré, patriarche des Niaré ; à Bagadadji, au domicile de la chefferie des Souraka par Mahamadou Touré. Sa dernière visite de courtoisie a été consacrée à la famille Dravé à Dravela, sous le leadership de Dramane Touré.

    Les échanges entre le RSSG et les Chefs de quartier ont porté sur la nécessité de mener à bien le processus de paix actuel qui inclut les élections, le dialogue et la réconciliation nationale. Cette visite du Représentant spécial dans les familles fondatrices de Bamako est le signe de l’attachement du diplomate à la culture du Mali, où le respect des autorités traditionnelles est une valeur cardinale.

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    Source: SOS Children's Villages International
    Country: Central African Republic, Chad, Libya, Nigeria, Sudan

    As a spate of conflicts affect neighbouring countries, Chad is struggling to deal with an influx of returnees, many of them children.

    With instability in the Central Africa Republic, northern Nigeria, the Darfur region of Sudan and Libya, many Chadians are returning home and according to the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), returnees include a “very high percentage of children”. While most are accompanied by their mothers, as men remain to protect livelihoods and property, some children are unaccompanied minors, having either lost or become separated from their parents.

    A spokesperson for the IOM in Chad told the news agency IRIN that many of the returnees lack shelter and basic supplies as they seek refuge in remote border regions of Chad. Because of the remoteness of border areas, it is also hard for agencies to provide timely emergency assistance and medical care.

    An estimated 22,000 Chadians have fled renewed fighting in the Dafur region of Sudan and arrived in the border town of Tissi. The IOM says that more than 70% of these returnees are children. Along the border with Nigeria, another 1,300 Chadians are taking refuge in the village of N’Gouboua, where there are a reported 770 youngsters, 268 of them unaccompanied. Some are students from Koranic schools, who have decided to return home due to violence in northern parts of Nigeria.

    The IOM warns that children who were born and grew up outside Chad will face serious challenges in adapting to the country’s education system, assuming they can be integrated into existing schools. To help address the problem, the IOM is working with Chadian education officials and the UN’s Child Agency, UNICEF, to assess the needs of returnee children, particularly those who don’t speak French or Chadian Arabic.

    New returnees, along with migrant workers and families who had already come back from Libya, are putting a huge strain on already overstretched resources in Chad. They have arrived at a time when the country continues to host around 300,000 refugees from Sudan along its eastern border and when many home communities are struggling to grow enough food after severe droughts affected Sahel regions last year. Agencies have warned that millions still need more assistance in Chad and other Sahel countries to rebuild livelihoods and reduce food insecurity.

    Find out more about how you can help children in Chad...

    Laurinda Luffman signature

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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Mali, Niger, Nigeria


    L’environnement social, économique et politique du Niger est resté stable au cours des six premiers mois de l’année 2013. Par contre, les conditions sécuritaires se sont graduellement dégradées avec deux attentats terroristes perpétrés durant le mois de mai contre une garnison militaire et des intérêts français dans le nord du pays (Agadez et Arlit), ainsi que l’évasion, en juin 2013, d’une vingtaine de détenus de la prison civile de Niamey, dont un présumé terroriste très dangereux.

    Environ 2.9 millions d’hommes, femmes et enfants continuent de vivre dans les zones jugées vulnérables à l’insécurité alimentaire et ce, malgré les excédents céréaliers de la campagne agricole 2012.
    La réévaluation de la sécurité alimentaire dans ces zones en juin 2013 révèle une augmentation de 10% de la population vivant dans ces zones en comparaison avec les 2.5 millions de personnes identifiées en novembre 2012. Les résultats de cette réévaluation ont aidé à mettre à jour les plans de réponse des organisations humanitaires et du Gouvernement nigérien.

    Plus de 50 000 personnes dont 3 247 nigériens (soit 10 012 ménages), fuyant le conflit au Nord-Mali, vivent au Niger. De plus, l’intensification de la lutte armée contre l’intégrisme dans les trois Etats fédérés du nord du Nigéria (Borno, Yobé, Jigawa) a poussé plus de 6 000 personnes (d’origine nigérienne, nigériane et autres nationalités africaines) à se réfugier dans la région de Diffa à l’extrême est du Niger, près du lac Tchad. Ces afflux devraient se poursuivre dans la région de Diffa et pourraient s’étendre à celles de Zinder et Maradi situées à l’ouest de Diffa.

    Une augmentation des niveaux de prévalence de la malnutrition aiguë sévère (MAS) et modérée (MAM) était déjà enregistrée respectivement à partir de la dixième et de la onzième semaine de l’année 2013, soit plus tôt qu’en 2012. Parmi les dix districts sanitaires qui présentent une situation nutritionnelle critique, quatre se trouvent dans de la région de Tahoua, trois dans la région de Zinder et trois dans la région de Maradi.

    Sur le plan sanitaire, une épidémie de choléra affecte depuis le mois de mai la région de Tillabéry et s’étend le long du fleuve Niger à des localités proches de la capitale, Niamey. Au 16 juin 2013, 322 cas avaient été confirmés, dont 10 décès, avec un taux de létalité de 3.1%.

    Les acteurs humanitaires, sous l’orientation du Coordonnateur Humanitaire (CH), continuent de soutenir les populations dans le besoin en appui aux efforts du Gouvernement et veillent à ce que ces personnes dans le besoin soient en mesure d’accéder à une aide adéquate. Le système de coordination sectorielle, à travers les clusters, joue un important rôle. Les activités réalisées et les résultats obtenus sont présentés dans les chapitres spécifiques consacrés aux clusters et les détails sont repris en annexe.

    Tous les résultats espérés à mi-parcours n’ont pas été atteints. Des contraintes majeures — telles que l’insuffisance et/ou la mise à disposition tardive des ressources dans certains secteurs et l’insécurité avec la réduction de l’espace humanitaire dans certaines zones — ont entravé la mise en œuvre sereine de la réponse et de l’assistance humanitaire et par conséquent sont à l’origine de la faible réalisation de certains objectifs.

    Cet appel révisé présente les résultats atteints à mi-parcours et ce qui reste à faire pour la deuxième partie de l’année. En date du 28 juin 2013, le budget de l’Appel Global 2013, qui s’élève à US$354 414 4931, était financé à 37.7%, soit $133 523 314. Il est possible que le montant total de ces financements n’ait pas encore été déclaré au Financial Tracking Service (Service de Suivi Financier) et ainsi que le niveau de financement actuel dans certains secteurs soit sous-évalué. Une notification périodique sera faite par le biais des Bulletins Humanitaires (et le Financial Tracking Service sur ligne est actualisé quotidiennement). Le montant révisé de l’Appel Global 2013 pour le Niger s’élève à $355 277 959, soit une augmentation de 0.2%.

    Durant la deuxième partie de l’année, il sera nécessaire de suivre de près l’évolution du contexte politique au Mali, la situation sécuritaire dans les Etats du nord du Nigéria ainsi que ses conséquences sur le Niger, la situation de l’hivernage qui pourrait être le catalyseur de crises alimentaires et nutritionnelles, les effets potentiels des catastrophes naturelles telles que les inondations qui ont habituellement lieu entre juillet, août et septembre.

    La population la plus vulnérable est constituée de femmes, personnes vivant avec un handicap, personnes ayant des maladies chroniques, et jeunes chefs de famille. Une attention particulière devra leur être accordée pour être certain que leurs besoins spécifiques sont pris en compte.

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    Source: Missionary International Service News Agency
    Country: Mali

    Un jeune homme a perdu la vie tandis qu’un certain nombre de personnes ont été blessées dans des affrontements nocturnes advenus dans le chef-lieu de Kidal, dans le Nord-est du pays, entre des touareg et des membres des communautés noires, a indiqué le quotidien local L’Essor, qui a précisé que les premiers coups de feu ont retenti vers neuf heures du soir jeudi et que les deux groupes rivaux ont été par la suite dispersés par les casques bleus de la mission de l’Onu (Minusma) et par les soldats français de l’Opération Serval. Ce vendredi matin, la situation demeure tendue : plusieurs magasins appartenant à des personnes originaires de Gao (Nord) auraient été pillés et des dizaines de civils d’origine africaine se seraient réfugiés dasn le camp militaire de Kidal. Selon un bilan diffusé par des sources du ministère malien de la Défense, les morts seraient au nombre de quatre et les blessés plusieurs dizaines.

    La responsabilité des violences est attribuée à certains membres du Mouvement national de libération de l’Azawad (Mnla) sous commandement d’un certain Moussa Yatara, déserteur de l’armée régulière, qui ont attaqué des habitations et des personnes ouvertement favorables à l’unité du Mali. À Kidal, la population serait partagée en deux : d’une part, les partisans de l’indépendance du territoire de l’Azawad et de l’autre, ceux qui invoquent le retour dans la ville de l’armée et de l’administration centrale de Bamako. Des sources gouvernementales ont observé que les violences des dernières heures représentaient une violation des accords de paix signés le mois dernier à Ouagadougou entre le gouvernement malien de transition et les touareg du Mnla et du Haut conseil pour l’unité de l’Azawad (Hcua).

    En théorie, pour permettrela tenue régulière de l’élection présidentielle fixée au 28 juillet prochain, les miliciens touareg ont commencé à se rassembler dans des camps spéciaux tandis que 150 soldats maliens ont été déployés dans le chef-lieu. La distribution des cartes d’électeur et les autres opérations administratives ont elles aussi débuté à l’approche de ce scrutin crucial pour l’avenir du pays. Jeudi, un des candidats à l’élection, l’émissaire pour le Nord du Mali, Tiébilé Dramé, s’est retiré de la campagne électorale en soutenant que les conditions pour voter n’étaient pas réunies, surtout à Kidal. D’autre part, le Nigeria a annoncé que ses troupes déployées au Mali dans le cadre de la mission africaine (Misma) désormais intégrée au contingent de l’Onu, seraient retirées du pays pour “faire face à la situation interne”, se référant à l’insurrection des islamistes de Boko Haram dans le Nord-est du Nigeria.

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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia


    The Somalia crisis remains one of the largest and most complex in the world. Moreover, a shortfall in funding jeopardizes efforts to build Somalis‟ resilience to shocks.

    The humanitarian situation in Somalia improved in the first half of 2013. The number of food-insecure people reduced, largely due to consecutive good rains and the delivery of assistance in more areas of the country. However, the scope of the humanitarian needs in Somalia remains vast.
    One million people still require aid to meet their basic needs and a further 1.7 million who recently emerged from crisis1 could fall back into crisis without sustained support.

    Even with the improved conditions, malnutrition rates in Somalia are among the highest in the world, with one in seven children acutely malnourished. Decades of conflict has also left over one million people internally displaced, and forced one million people to seek refuge in neighbouring countries. The prolonged crisis has translated into a weak socio-economic context with poor infrastructure, and households have little ability to absorb shocks caused by natural hazards, disease outbreaks, displacement, a poor harvest or other social and economic challenges.

    Somalia is still one of the most challenging security environments for the delivery of humanitarian assistance. Aid workers have capitalized on gradual improvements in security and access to scale up their presence on the ground and reach people in need. However they are still forced to seek ways to further scale up humanitarian aid in hard-to-reach areas through local partners. Given the current risk-averse approach by donors in Somalia, local NGOs based in hard-to-reach or non-accessible areas have little access to bilateral funding. At the same time, larger NGOs and organizations that have access to funding do not have access to hard-to-reach areas. In light of the 19 June 2013 attack on the UN Common Compound in Mogadishu, the UN is reviewing and reinforcing its security measures to ensure continued delivery of humanitarian aid to those in need.

    Despite these challenges, so far this year, an average of 224,000 people per month have received food, vouchers or cash and livelihood assistance; nearly 200,000 malnourished children were reached with nutritional care; and more than 230,000 livestock were treated for diseases. In response to the multi-layered challenges facing Somalia, humanitarian partners are implementing a three-year humanitarian strategy to help Somalis be more resilient to shocks such as droughts, floods and cyclical food insecurity. The 2013-2015 CAP strategy prioritizes resiliencestrengthening as a key objective. By mid-year, only 33% of the requested $1.3 billion has been received. Humanitarian actors have had to focus on life-saving actions, and have made little investment in basic services, safety nets and resilience programmes, due to the limited funding thus far in 2013. This shortfall in funding is very alarming and undermines the ability of humanitarian actors to reach the longer-term goals of rebuilding Somalis‟ resilience, and will affect the success of the three-year strategy. It will also jeopardize efforts to finding lasting solutions for Somalia‟s 1.1 million IDPs. The importance of the comprehensive CAP approach was underlined in May 2013, when the first scientific study on the 2011 famine death toll was released. The study showed that about 258,000 people died as a result of severe food insecurity and famine between October 2010 and April 2012. Half of those who died were children under five, which amounted to 10% of children in southern and central Somalia. The report cited a combination of poverty, armed conflict, drought and disease as drivers of the famine.

    Only with timely, adequate and sustained funding will humanitarians be able to effectively build on the gains made since late 2011 through investment in resilience to mitigate and avoid crises, and support the transition from aid dependence to sustainability. By investing in resilience now, we can prevent repeating mistakes from the past, and avoid a future humanitarian catastrophe. The three-year strategy is expected to increase the resilience of the people on an incremental basis in 2014 and 2015, building on the investments of 2013. The humanitarian community is also developing the capacity of communities, national partners and local authorities in disaster risk reduction and emergency preparedness to avoid vulnerable people falling back into crisis after a shock. Unless these programmes receive more funding, the strategy will fail.

    Although recent assessments show that the total number of people in need of humanitarian aid has decreased from 3.8 million to 2.7 million people in need, the strategic objectives and the total planning figure in the CAP have not been altered at mid-year. As this is the first of five reviews of the three-year CAP, the Somalia Humanitarian Country Team decided that the strategy to address underlying vulnerability is still appropriate. The CAP planning targets are based on historical data and patterns that have been prevalent over the past six years in Somalia. The targets, and possibly the strategy, will be revised at the second revision in October 2013.

    The revised funding requirement for the first year of the 2013-2015 CAP is $1.153 billion, a decrease of $179 million from the original 2013 appeal of $1.33 billion. This is in line with the realistic implementation capacity of humanitarian agencies, for the remainder of the year.

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