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ReliefWeb - Updates

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    Source: UN Children's Fund
    Country: Mali

    HEADLINES

    Legislative elections were held on 23 November, with reports of low voter turnout in all areas except Kidal, and widespread indications suggesting electoral irregularities. A second round of elections has been planned for 15 December.

     As of 20 November some 147,000 students are now registered and receiving support from UNICEF and Cluster partners for the 2013-2014 school year.
     During National Immunisation Days in Gao, Kayes, Mopti, Timbuktu and Kidal over 2 million children were vaccinated against Polio this month.
     SMART methodology surveys conducted in 2013 indicate that Global Acute Malnutrition levels remain at emergency thresholds levels in Mali, with an estimated caseload of over 566,000 children under 5 for 2014, out of which 85 per cent will be situated in the six southern regions.
     UNICEF requires $91.9 million to provide urgent assistance to children in Mali in 2013. So far, only $35 million or 38 per cent of the required funding has been received.


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    Source: Amnesty
    Country: Mali

    Authorities in Mali must urgently identify the 21 bodies found in a mass grave last night, believed to belong to soldiers abducted in May 2012, Amnesty International said.

    “Ever since the soldiers were abducted from the Kati Military Camp, their loved ones have been desperate to know what has happened to them. Authorities in Mali must now do everything in their power to give the families the full truth,” said Gaëtan Mootoo, Mali researcher at Amnesty International, who met with some of the relatives of the soldiers last week.

    “Unfortunately, the initial reports seem to confirm our fears that the 21 soldiers could have been executed,” added Gaëtan Mootoo. “Amnesty International extends its deepest sympathies to all the families concerned.”

    The mass grave was discovered following the arrest of General Amadou Haya Sanogo who led a military coup in Mali in March 2012. Several of his soldiers were also detained.

    They were charged with kidnapping, murder and assassination in connection with the disappearance of 21 ‘red beret’ soldiers suspected of supporting a counter-coup against General Sanogo.

    Last week, an Amnesty International delegation, led by the organization’s Secretary General Salil Shetty met with relatives of the disappeared soldiers.

    Fatimata Cissé, whose husband is one of the 21 disappeared soldiers, told the delegation: “I’m completely traumatised not knowing what has happened to my husband. I can’t go on like this. Even if he is in a mass grave, I need to know.”

    Sagara Binto Maiga, President of the wives and relatives of the disappeared Red Berets (soldiers), said: “We told the Minister of Defence that we would march naked into the mosques if he did not tell us what has happened to our loved ones. We gave them a deadline of the arrival of the Amnesty International delegation [at the end of November]. He told us to be patient and that they were doing what they can. The very next day Sanogo was arrested and charged.”

    “Amnesty International welcomes the efforts the government is making towards restoring justice and rule of law,” says Gaëtan Mootoo.

    “But it is the tip of the iceberg. More needs to be done to establish the truth of all the grave human rights violations committed over the last two years.”

    During its most recent visit to Mali, Amnesty International launched an Agenda for Human Rights, calling on the authorities to investigate and bring to justice all perpetrators of human rights abuses and violations committed over the past two years.

    In particular, the Agenda called for information on the whereabouts of the 21 soldiers and the execution of more than 40 civilians by Malian security forces.


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    Source: Arbeiter-Samariter-Bund Deutschland e.V., Cash Learning Partnership
    Country: Niger
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    Un projet par Arbeiter Samariter Bund (ASB)

    En 2012, le Niger a été affecté par une crise alimentaire qui a entraîné des déplacements de populations. L’ONG ASB (Arbeiter Samariter Bund) est intervenue dans le domaine de la sécurité alimentaire pour palier au manque d’accès à la nourriture des déplacés et d’autres personnes affectées, pour favoriser les retours et éviter de nouveaux déplacements. ASB, en utilisant les transferts monétaires, est parvenu à rapatrier 672 ménages déplacés internes dans leurs communes d’origine à temps pour la période des semis (juin).


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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Afghanistan, Benin, Burkina Faso, Chad, Djibouti, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Tajikistan, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, World, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Sudan (Republic of)
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    KEY MESSAGES

    • In West Africa, market supplies improved throughout the region in October due to average ongoing harvests. Carryover stocks were average to above-average in Mali, Burkina Faso, and Benin but below-average in many areas of the Niger and Nigeria due to the effects flood and conflict that disrupted the marketing system in 2012 and early 2013. Stable rice imports from international markets contributed to food availability in Senegal and Mauritania (Pages 3-5).

    • In East Africa, sorghum prices increased atypically in parts of Sudan and Ethiopia. Maize prices increased atypically in Kenya due to below-average expected harvests. Bean production in Uganda, Rwanda, and Kenya was below- average in 2013, resulting in tight market supplies, reduced trade flows, and high prices. The effects of localized conflict, the devaluation of local currencies, and high levels of inflation reinforced upward price trends in some areas (Pages 5-8).

    • In Southern Africa, maize prices were stable or began increasing in October as the lean season approached. Price levels remained above their respective 2012 and five-year average levels due to tight regional supplies resulting from localized production shortfalls during the previous two seasons, as well as strong export and institutional demand. Maize grain and meal prices continued to increase atypically in parts of Zambia and Malawi. Rice, cassava, and beans reinforced food availability throughout the region (Pages 8-10).

    • In Haiti, local black bean and maize prices were stable or decreased due to improved food availability following spring harvests. In Central America, beans prices declined in September due to the availability of ample stocks from aboveaverage production in 2012 and 2013 (Pages 11-12).

    • In Afghanistan and Tajikistan, wheat flour prices were stable in October due to ongoing above-average harvests and the availability of lowerpriced imports from Kazakhstan (Page 12-13).

    • International rice prices remained stable or decreased in October.
      Maize prices decreased further with improved harvest prospects in the United States. Wheat prices increased due to concerns over production in South America and Black Sea states. Crude oil prices were stable (Pages 2-3).


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    Source: ECOWAS
    Country: Mali
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    N°: 335/2013

    26 November 2013 [Bamako - Mali]

    The ECOWAS Election Observation Mission (EOM) said Mali’s legislative elections of Sunday 24th November 2013, took place “in acceptable conditions of freedom and transparency.”

    In its Preliminary Declaration in Bamako on Monday, the 100-member Mission led by Prof. Amos Sawyer, former President of Liberia’s Government of National Unity, noted that the “shortcomings observed, did not in any significant way, affect the conduct of the election in line with globally acceptable standards.”

    “Though not intended, the disenfranchisement of some young voters and some electorate in the insecure north, as well as the low turn-out in the elections, are regrettable,” the Mission said in the four-page, 17-point declaration, read by a member of the ECOWAS Council of the Wise, Ambassador Leopold Ouedraogo.

    The other shortcomings noted by the Mission included:

    • Inadequate sensitization of voters on the relocation of some polling stations since the Presidential election, particularly in the northern regions of Gao and Timbuktu;

    • late display of Voters Lists at several polling stations across the country, which resulted in difficulties in locating polling stations;

    • Poor representation of women, who constituted only 14% of the more than 1,140 candidates, as well as “an isolated case of ballot box snatching in the northern region of Kidal.”

    However, the Mission observed that the processes and conduct of stakeholders on Election Day showed “a marked improvement” over the Presidential elections of July/August, including the timely arrival of electoral officials, early delivery of essential materials and the orderly conduct of voters.

    Ahead of the second round of the legislative election in a few weeks’ time, the Mission urged the relevant electoral management bodies to ensure adequate voter sensitization and early display of voters lists in polling stations.

    While welcoming the scaling up of counter-terrorism and security operations in the north of the country,” the ECOWAS EOM urged the allied forces to maintain the momentum in order to further improve the security environment, particularly in Gao, Kidal and Tessalit.”

    It “encourages the political parties to intensify efforts in party building, ensure greater internal party democracy, and implement affirmative action in favour of women and the youth to enhance their competitiveness and representation in critical decision-making institutions of the state, particularly the National and Communal Assemblies.”

    The EOM congratulated the political parties, candidates and the electorate for their peaceful conduct in the electoral process, and encouraged them to show the same maturity during the processes of collation and declaration of results.

    “It also enjoins them to seek solutions to any grievances exclusively through legal channels.”

    “The ECOWAS EOM is convinced that the conclusion of the legislative elections will endow Mali with another legitimate platform to spearhead the on-going reconciliation and reconstruction efforts. It reiterates the commitment of ECOWAS to accompany Mali in these processes,” the Mission said.

    While expressing appreciation to the UN Mission, MINUSMA, the French Force,
    Operation Serval and the entire International Community for their support to the Malian efforts aimed at re-establishing and stabilizing the security, political, and institutional order in the country, it condemned “the recent upsurge in sporadic terrorist activities and calls on all armed non-state groups to submit to disarmament and join the dialogue and reconciliation process.”

    More than 6.5 million registered Malian voters went to the polls on Sunday to elect members of the country’s 147-seat Parliament.

    The deployment of the ECOWAS Observation Mission is in furtherance of efforts aimed at helping Mali conclude the ECOWAS-facilitated transitional road map for the restoration of full constitutional order and the country’s territorial integrity following last year’s military coup and separatist insurrection in the north.


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    Source: Government of Switzerland
    Country: Mali

    Des activités récréatives et un soutien psychosocial permettraient de redonner espoir aux 4'400 enfants et jeunes qui ont souffert de la crise au nord du Mali.

    A Tombouctou, l’occupation armée et l’imposition de la sharia ont fortement affecté le mode de vie des communautés. En effet, nombreux sont les Tomboctiens (dont des enfants) qui ont assisté ou été victimes de scènes de violence : châtiments corporels, amputations, viols, mariages précoces etc.
    Par ailleurs, privés d’activités récréatives, les enfants, particulièrement les filles, devaient rester à la maison par mesure de sécurité. Aujourd’hui, avec le retour progressif de la paix, la Direction du développement et de la coopération DDC s’est engagée, à travers Plan International, à soutenir 4’4000 enfants et jeunes de cette région. Elle vient d’octroyer plus de 200'000 CHF (106 millions de FCFA) dans un projet visant à prévenir et réduire les risques liés aux atteintes psychosociales sur ces derniers.

    Des activités ludiques pour les enfants

    Ainsi, l’organisation partenaire mettra en place 22 espaces de loisirs équipés de jouets, de jeux et d’instruments de musique. Ces derniers pourront accueillir des enfants de 3 à 17 ans (50% de filles) scolarisés ou non. En vue de développer leur intérêt pour la découverte tout en leur redonnant la joie de vivre, les enfants pourront y pratiquer le sport et participer à des pièces de théâtre. Par ailleurs, les activités récréatives et les soins prodigués aux jeunes, les plus en difficultés, devraient les aider à reprendre une scolarité et une vie normale.

    Un personnel de qualité et à l’écoute

    En vue de leur meilleure prise en charge psychosociale et en relation avec l’académie de Tombouctou, Plan formera plus de 150 animateurs. Les formations aborderont des thèmes sur la psychologie infantile et le droit des enfants (survie, développement, protection et cas d’abus). Il mettra en place des comités villageois de protection de l’enfance. Considérés comme relais, ces derniers auront pour rôle de transmettre les messages de protection à la population. L’organisation s’appuiera, en outre, sur les pratiques de protection traditionnelles tout en impliquant les communautés locales (chefs de village, associations locales, etc).


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    Source: Government of Switzerland
    Country: Mali

    L’élection du nouveau président malien Ibrahim Boubacar Keita à 77,61% des voix consacre le retour du pays à l’ordre constitutionnel. La Suisse, à l’instar des autres bailleurs, s’était engagée à aider ce pays à les organiser dans les meilleures conditions.

    Prestation de la troupe théâtrale Yérèdon sur les conditions d’un vote crédible dans un quartier populairede Bamako Les élections présidentielles au Mali se sont déroulées dans le calme. La forte mobilisation des électeurs a, par ailleurs, marqué leur volonté de sortir d’un an et demi de crise politique et sécuritaire. Tenues dans un contexte particulier– le manque d’information des populations sur les enjeux électoraux, le faible taux de participation aux élections antérieures ainsi que le risque élevé de tensions sociales et politiques – le Mali a su relever le défi d’organiser ces élections dans un esprit de réconciliation. La Direction du développement et de la coopération DDC a investi plus de CHF 3, 250, 000 (soit 1.73 milliards FCFA) pour aider le pays à réussir ses élections.

    Retour sur la contribution Suisse

    L’engagement de la DDC avait pour but de susciter une large participation des maliens au processus électoral. Pour ce faire, elle a contribué au fond commun du Programme des Nations Unies pour le Développement afin de soutenir des activités citoyennes et la logistique des élections.

    Par ailleurs, grâce à son appui à l’association Cri 2002, SOS Démocratie ainsi qu’à la radio Klédu, des milliers de citoyens - femmes, jeunes, leaders traditionnels – ont pu être informés sur les enjeux des élections. Les initiatives portées par ses partenaires ont comporté:des campagnes d’éducation civique (sur le retrait des cartes d’électeurs, le vote transparent, la participation des candidatures féminines, les principes électoraux…), la diffusion de manuels de la citoyenne, la mise à disposition de numéros verts, la diffusion d’émissions, l’organisation de débats radiophoniques dans six langues nationales, etc. Ces initiatives ont concerné plus d’une quinzaine de quartiers de Bamako ainsi que les régions de Koulikoro, Ségou, Sikasso, Mopti et Kayes.

    Le soutien suisse a, en outre, porté sur le renforcement technique du cadre de concertation officiel existant entre le Ministère en charge de l’organisation des élections et les partis politiques. Ce projet, qui vise à renforcer les échanges entre partis politiques et organes de gestion des élections ainsi qu’à atténuer les risques de tensions électorales, a permis de renforcer la transparence et le caractère participatif du processus électoral. Sa contribution a, aussi, permis de développer les capacités d’organisation de la société civile en matière de gestion et prévention des conflits liés aux élections. Par le biais de ses partenaires, la Suisse poursuivra son soutien au Mali dans l’organisation des prochaines élections législatives et communales.


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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Central African Republic, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Philippines, Senegal, Syrian Arab Republic, World, Yemen

    Alertes alimentaires pour le Sahel et la République centrafricaine

    5 décembre 2013, Rome – Les nouvelles estimations de la FAO établissent la production céréalière mondiale à près de 2 500 millions de tonnes (riz usiné compris), un nouveau record. D'après le dernier rapport Perspectives de récoltes et situation alimentaire, ce chiffre est supérieur de près de 8,4 pour cent à celui de l'an dernier et d'environ 6 pour cent au précédent record de 2011.

    Alors que l'on prévoit une augmentation de la production céréalière mondiale, la FAO a averti que dans plusieurs régions d'Afrique et ailleurs, la situation de la sécurité alimentaire se dégradait.

    Dans les pays sahéliens d'Afrique de l'Ouest – à savoir le Tchad, le Mali, la Mauritanie, le Niger et le Sénégal – les cultures et les pâturages ont pâti cette année de l'arrivée tardive et de l'arrêt précoce des pluies. Cette situation pourrait conduire à une aggravation de l'insécurité alimentaire et de la malnutrition durant la campagne de commercialisation de 2013/14. Un déplacement massif de la population malienne dû aux troubles intérieurs contribue aussi à l'insécurité alimentaire de la région.

    En République centrafricaine, 1,3 million de personnes ont besoin d'une aide alimentaire d'urgence, en raison des troubles intérieurs.

    En Afrique australe, les prix des céréales atteignent ou frôlent des niveaux records dans plusieurs pays, en raison d'une contraction de l'offre durant la campagne de commercialisation de 2013/14. Dans certaines régions, le manque de pluies a retardé les semis des cultures de 2014.

    Aux Philippines, 14 millions de personnes ont été affectées par le typhon Haiyan. La FAO a lancé un appel de plus de 30 millions d'USD pour financer le relèvement du secteur agricole et le Programme alimentaire mondial a proposé une aide alimentaire d'urgence au profit de 2,5 millions de personnes.

    En Syrie et au Yémen, les troubles intérieurs persistants ont engendré une grave insécurité alimentaire; une aide alimentaire d'urgence doit être fournie respectivement à 6 et 4,5 millions de personnes.

    Les cours internationaux des produits alimentaires sont stables

    L'Indice FAO des prix des produits alimentaires, également publié aujourd'hui, est resté stable en novembre. Il s'est établi en moyenne à 206,3 points le mois dernier, niveau pratiquement inchangé par rapport à sa valeur révisée du mois d'octobre (206,6 points), mais inférieur de 9,5 points (4,4 pour cent) à sa valeur de novembre 2012. Une forte baisse des prix du sucre le mois dernier a pratiquement annulé la hausse des prix des huiles. Les cours moyens des céréales ont légèrement fléchi mais ceux de la viande et des produits laitiers sont restés stables.

    L'indice mesure la variation mensuelle des cours internationaux de 5 groupes de produits alimentaires de base, à travers le suivi de 73 cotations.

    Perspectives de récolte

    Les récentes révisions des estimations de la production céréalière mondiale sont principalement dues à des ajustements des estimations des chiffres relatifs à la production de maïs des États-Unis, de la Fédération de Russie et de l'Ukraine, devenus plus fiables à l'approche de la fin des récoltes.

    D'après les chiffres les plus récents, l'augmentation totale de la production céréalière mondiale enregistrée cette année reflète une amélioration des productions de blé (+ 7,8 pour cent), de céréales secondaires (+ 12 pour cent) et de riz (+ 1 pour cent seulement).

    En ce qui concerne les cultures de blé d'hiver semées dans l'hémisphère Nord qui seront récoltées en 2014, les premières perspectives sont le plus souvent favorables.

    Les stocks céréaliers mondiaux devraient augmenter pour atteindre 572 millions de tonnes à la clôture des campagnes agricoles de 2014, soit 13,4 pour cent ou près de 68 millions de tonnes de plus qu'à la fin de la campagne précédente. Ce chiffre est supérieur de près de 9 millions de tonnes au niveau signalé en novembre, car les stocks de clôture de blé et de céréales secondaires ont été révisés à la hausse, alors que ceux de riz ont légèrement diminué.

    Du fait de la forte expansion des stocks céréaliers mondiaux enregistrée au cours de cette campagne, le rapport stocks/utilisation devrait atteindre 23,5 pour cent; il serait alors très au-dessus de son plus bas niveau historique, qui était de 18,4 pour cent en 2007/08.

    Contact

    Peter Lowrey
    Relations presse (Rome)
    (+39) 06 570 52762
    (+39) 340 6992258
    peter.lowrey@fao.org


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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Niger, Nigeria
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    1. Contexte général

    Depuis le mois de mai 2013, la région de Diffa, au Sud-Est du Niger, a accueilli 37,332 déplacés en provenance principalement des régions du Borno et Yobe, au Nord du Nigeria. Ces mouvements de populations coïncident en partie avec la déclaration de l’état d’urgence dans les états de Borno, Yobe et Adamawa faite par le président du Nigeria Goodluck Jonathan le 14 mai 2013.

    Dans ce contexte, et en consultation avec les autorités nigériennes et les acteurs humanitaires, le Haut-Commissariat des Nations Unies pour les Réfugiés (UNHCR) ont conduit une première enquête inter-agence sur la situation des populations déplacées dans la région de Diffa entre le 28 mai et le 1er juin 2013.


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    Source: UN Children's Fund
    Country: Mali, Niger
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    HEADLINES

    • UNICEF is renewing its LoU (Letter of Understanding) with UNHCR for another year to continue to support refugees in the sectors of Education, Protection, Nutrition, WASH and Communication for Development in 2014.

    • UNHCR, in collaboration with the Institute for Training and Demographic Research, released a study on demographic, economic and socio-cultural profile of Malian refugees in Niger that will inform UNICEF and its partners in adapting their humanitarian response.

    • As of 10 November 2013 (week 45), 358,500 children (under the age of five) benefited from the integrated treatment for Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM). 15% of the cases (54,827) were reported to have severe medical complications and were admitted into intensive care/inpatient facilities while the rest (303,673) were treated as outpatients.

    • To prevent malnutrition, UNICEF is scaling up its activities aiming at ensuring a safe access to water and sanitation in CRENI/CRENAS and enhancing psychosocial care for malnourished children in CRENIs and CRENAs.

    • As of 25 November 2013, 577 cholera cases have been registered including 13 deaths which represent a fatality rate of 2.25%.

    • UNICEF is highly involved in the CAP 2014 elaboration. On 28 and 29 November 2013, UNICEF CAP focal points attended the OCHA regional meeting in Dakar aiming at setting Strategic Objectives and define Resilience for the Sahel region.


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    Source: UN Children's Fund
    Country: Mali, Mauritania
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    HEADLINES

    · $20,222,932 is required to respond to the humanitarian needs of children in Mauritania in 2013, with a current funding gap of $6,728,052 (33% of total requirements) to save the lives of children affected by the Malian refugee crisis and by malnutrition.

    · Mauritania is the largest recipient of refugees fleeing the conflict in Mali. 66,198 refugees* are living in the Mbéra camp, a remote desert location on the border with Mali with significant security challenges. 57% of the refugees are children and many have been in the camp for almost two years, resulting in overlapping emergency and medium term needs.

    · UNICEF, in coordination with UNHCR and partners, are providing formal and non-formal education in the camp for 5,660 children (50% girls) in six primary schools, one secondary school and 10 literacy numeracy centres and psychosocial stimulation for around 5,000 children at six child friendly spaces. In 2013, 3,134 children have been treated for Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) by UNICEF and other nutrition actors. UNICEF is also continuing to support water treatment and distribution, showers and latrines and hygiene promotion sessions.

    · Communities hosting the refugees are very poor and suffer high levels of food insecurity and malnutrition. UNICEF is helping to reinforce basic services, including malnutrition treatment, education, health and WASH.

    · At the end of October, 45% of the 2013 caseload of SAM (23,901 children under five) has been reached and treated. UNICEF is supporting active screening and referral of malnutrition cases as well as mobiles clinics in order to increase program coverage and collect missing data.

    · Preventative blanket feeding, cash transfers and programmes to build longer term resilience are being implemented alongside life-saving nutrition interventions providing therapeutic food and medicines. A multi-sectorial package of services is being scaled up from 291 to all 488 nutrition centres. This includes health and ‘WASH in Nut’ interventions to reinforce nutrition outcomes.

    · The estimated caseload for 2014 is 125,263 children with GAM, including 30,741 children with SAM. This is an increase of more than 25% from 2013.

    · A joint visit by the Regional Directors of UNICEF, WFP and UNHCR and the Emergency Coordinator for the Sahel 17-21 November reviewed the needs and programme implementation for the nutrition and refugee crises in Mauritania.


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    Source: Stimson Center
    Country: Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mali, Rwanda

    By William J. Durch - UN peacekeepers in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) recently knocked down a nasty militia called M23 with a political-military punch that may become a model for dealing with rights-abusing armed groups elsewhere in Africa. The political punch combined regional and international support for region-wide peace with pressure by donors on aid-dependent Rwanda to cut its support to M23.

    The military part of the punch was a new Force Intervention Brigade (FIB). Originally conceived as a neutral, regional force to enforce the regional peace process, it was eventually integrated within the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO). The brigade's troops from South Africa, Tanzania and Malawi deployed with a mandate to "neutralize" groups like the Rwanda-backed M23.

    In early November, Congolese troops backed by the Force Intervention Brigade routed M23 forces that were, by then, both short on supplies and shorn of regional political support. Some have stressed the new mandate in accounting for the Force Intervention Brigade's successes to date, but for the United Nations, "neutralize" can mean many things - such as isolation and cutting of supplies or reducing popular support - up to and including deadly force. Like other UN missions launched or reinforced in the past decade, MONUSCO and its FIB have the right to use "all necessary means" to protect civilians under imminent threat of violence and to carry out other key elements of their mandates.

    So what is different here? It is the intent to force, as it were, the use of force - highlighting some Security Council members' growing impatience with peacekeeping mission leaders' failure to effectively use the tools, from political to military, that they were given to do their jobs.

    Thus, along with a new mandate, MONUSCO received, in quick succession, both a new force commander and new civilian head of mission. Once the Force Intervention Brigade had a relatively brief interval to form and train, the mission and its new leaders launched military operations in support of the Congolese army.

    Other crises in the past 10 years have also prompted changes of mandates and leadership favoring the use of force. In May 2003, an aggressive new head of mission organized a UN response to interethnic violence in the DRC's far northeast district of Ituri. The UN deployed well-armed, brigade-strength, mechanized infantry forces to Ituri and immediately set out to pacify the district.

    Three years later in Haiti a change in head of mission led within months to the UN's winter 2006-07 campaign against the powerful and heavily armed gangs of Port au Prince and other Haitian cities. UN forces undertook coordinated assaults on gang-ridden slums, handing over some 800 leaders to Haitian authorities despite fierce armed resistance.

    In late 2010 in Côte d'Ivoire, UN peacekeepers protected the winning presidential candidate from the forces of the incumbent, who used street gangs and uniformed services alike to harass not just opposition politicians but the UN mission itself.

    As tensions peaked in early spring, the mission received a new force commander, then reinforcements from the UN operation next door in Liberia, and finally a more forceful mandate. UN forces executed this mandate in collaboration with a small French force, targeting the old regime's heavy weapon sites and ultimately resolving the crisis.

    The DRC thus matches a pattern of reactive UN crisis reinforcement but does entail two departures that suggest how crisis prevention and response may be structured in the future. The first one is bringing the Force Intervention Brigade into the structure of the UN operation, to support a regional peace initiative. The Force Intervention Brigade's troop contributors are members of the Southern African Development Community, one of Africa's Regional Economic Communities that pledged several years ago to raise brigade-sized contributions to an African Standby Force.

    The Standby Force was intended to stabilize dangerous situations under the aegis of the African Union. Neither the African Union nor the Regional Economic Communities can afford to support such forces on their own, but with globally raised UN peacekeeping money, planning and logistical support, they can. The UN has used this model to support the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) for nearly five years, with reasonable success - due in no small part to greater risk tolerance by troop contributors than is common in the UN's own operations.

    In Mali, the UN has opted to replace a West African-led mission with its own operation, in a politically unresolved and terrorist-fringed situation that is more complex and dangerous than the previous missions it has taken over in that region, in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Côte d'Ivoire. It remains to be seen how effective it will be.

    It is, however, the Central African Republic that may truly test the liberal impulse to rescue the decent masses from the corrupt and violent few. Incipient nihilism there invites an operation aimed not just at stability but at temporary regional or international trusteeship. The largest effort of its kind yet attempted, such an operation would preferably be led by the African Union, with the scope of UN support given AMISOM and forces from AU members for whom the meltdown in CAR may pose a clear and present danger. The UN and the AU, in combination, match regional interests with global resources; properly managed, a clear and present win.

    William J. Durch is co-director of the Future of Peace Operations program at the Stimson Center, a nonprofit and nonpartisan international security think tank.


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Central African Republic, Chad, Mali
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    LES TITRES

     MAS en milieu urbain : « Le défis ce n’est pas la prévalence, mais le nombre de cas d’enfants malnutris » (ALIMA, 26/11/13)

     FAO warns of new risk of food insecurity in Sahel (Reuters, 05/12/13)

     Chad struggles to prevent disease in midst of humanitarian emergency (Guardian, 03/12/13)

     Humanitarian actors in the Sahel start work on a three-year response plan (OCHA, 28/11/13)

     La Chine offre des médicaments antipaludiques au Tchad (CRI, 27/11/13)

     Tchad : production d’un film sur les soins aux personnes handicapées à N’Djamena (CICR, 03/12/13)

     Les experts du Bassin du Niger en conclave à Yaoundé (Mediaterre, 26/11/13)

     Neglected indigenous food crops can help alleviate hunger and malnutrition (Daily Nation, 26/11/13)


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    Source: Fédération Internationale des Ligues des Droits de I'Homme
    Country: Mali

    FIDH and AMDH call for reclassification of charges against General Sanogo

    On 3 December 2013, Mr Yaya Karambé, the judge in charge of the judicial inquiry into the case of the "Missing Red Berets", proceeded with the exhumation of 21 bodies in the village Diago, near Kati. These bodies are believed to be those of 21 military Red Berets missing as of 30 April 2012 following what has been called an attempted counter-coup d’etat to put an end to the military junta led by General Amadou Haya Sanogo, who had deposed President Amadou Toumani Touré a month earlier. FIDH and AMDH, which are civil parties in the proceedings and represent 17 families of victims, welcome this major step forward for the investigation. Today, our organisations are filing a request with the investigating judge for reclassification of the charges against the accused to "assassination and murder".

    This discovery follows the significant progress made in recent days by Mr. Karambé. In addition to the indictment of General Sanogo, as a result of being provided a list of 20 names by two senior military officers close to General Sanogo, Mr. Karambé was able to proceed with three new indictments. This brings the total number of those charged to seven, two of whom led to a detailed confession on the conditions in which the victims were summarily executed and buried in a mass grave.

    « The discovery of the 21 bodies is sad news for the families of missing persons, but is also an important step towards the truth and the identification of individual criminal responsibility. The relatives of the missing still awaiting formal identification of the remains, but we will ask the judge on behalf of victims’ families, the that the charges against those presumed to be responsible can be reclassified to assassination, » said Mr. Moctar Mariko, AMDH President and lawyer representing the victims.

    On 26 July 2012, Malian prosecutors opened legal proceedings in the "Missing Red Berets” case. In early November 2013, the judge in charge of the case had issued fifteen warrants against senior officials of the military junta. He has since charged a total of seven individuals, including General Sanogo, who was charged on 27 November 2013 with complicity in kidnapping and was placed in custody.

    On 26 November 2013, FIDH , AMDH and 17 family members of the missing soldiers joined in judicial proceedings as civil parties in order to make sure the victims had their say, and to support efforts by the investigating judge to ensure that all those responsible are held accountable in this emblematic case of the fight against impunity in Mali .

    On 30 April 2012, Red Berets loyal to President ATT, who had been overthrown on 22 March 2012 by a coup d’état lead by Amadou Haya Sanogo, tried to retake power. After three days of fighting, the pro-Sanogo forces arrested, detained, and tortured many pro-ATT soldiers. According to the investigations conducted by members of FIDH, AMDH and other human rights organisations, some 20 soldiers (the majority of them Red Berets) detained at the Kati Soundiata Keita military base - headquarters of the Sanogo forces – were taken away in military trucks on 2 May 2012 and have since disappeared. According to corroborating sources indicated that the victims were executed and buried a dozen kilometers from Kati. Additionally, Red Berets, during the attempted counter coup d’état, had attacked the Office of Radio and Television of Mali (ORTM), which resulted in several Green Beret soldiers (loyal to Sanogo) being killed. This event is the subject of a separate legal procedure. In the days that followed these events, our organisations have documented a number of human rights violations such as acts of torture, arbitrary arrests, ill-treatment, as well as the enforced disappearance of the Red Berets.


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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Eritrea, Mauritania, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen
    preview


    Situation threatening along the Red Sea coast and in Mauritania

    The Desert Locust situation worsened during November along both sides of the Red Sea and in northwest Mauritania.

    Locusts continue to gregarize and form hopper bands and groups of hoppers and adults in Mauritania, Yemen, and Sudan. A few swarms have formed in Sudan and Yemen. An outbreak developed in Eritrea during November as a result of good rains in August and October, followed by undetected breeding.

    Although control operations intensified in all countries, including aerial control operations in Eritrea, a second generation of breeding in December and January will cause locust infestations to increase further and more hopper bands and small swarms will form along both sides of the Red Sea and, to a lesser extent, in northwest Mauritania.

    Winter breeding may also occur in northwest Somalia where a tropical cyclone brought heavy rains and flooding in November.

    All efforts are required to reduce locust numbers and the potential threat to crops in the affected countries.


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    Source: World Bank
    Country: Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Senegal

    LES POINTS MARQUANTS

    • La Guinée, le Mali, la Mauritanie et le Sénégal vont renforcer la gestion commune de leurs ressources en eau.

    • Plus de 4,5 millions d’habitants dans les communautés riveraines du fleuve Sénégal bénéficieront de cette initiative.

    • Cette initiative est la première d’une série de projets annoncée en novembre 2013 dans le cadre d’un financement de 1,5 milliard de dollars destiné à l’ensemble du Sahel.

    WASHINGTON, le 5 décembre 2013. Depuis sa source jusqu’à son embouchure dans l’océan Atlantique, le fleuve Sénégal traverse des régions qui sont parmi les plus arides d’Afrique de l’Ouest. Ce cours d’eau précieux qui traverse quatre pays — la Guinée, le Mali, la Mauritanie et le Sénégal —rythme la vie économique, sociale et culturelle de plus de 35 millions de personnes, et en particulier les 12 millions de gens qui vivent dans son bassin versant, d’une surface de 300 000 km2.

    En approuvant aujourd’hui un nouveau projet d’aménagement du bassin du Sénégal d’un montant de 228,5 millions de dollars, le Groupe de la Banque mondiale vient intensifier les efforts entrepris pour lutter contre la pénurie d’eau qui frappe le Sahel et améliorer les perspectives agricoles de plusieurs millions d’habitants. Cette opération constitue la deuxième phase d’un programme multisectoriel et plurinational qui vise à développer, sur une période de dix ans, la production agricole, l’énergie et l’irrigation entre autres objectifs. Un coup de pouce pour l’agriculture

    Prenons le cas du riz, qui représente l’un des principaux aliments de base en Afrique de l’Ouest et une céréale de choix. Pratiquée le long des rives du fleuve Sénégal et plus loin dans le delta, la riziculture est l’une des activités dominantes chez les populations agricoles locales ainsi que leur première source de nourriture et de revenu. Source qui dépend, en grande partie, des apports en eau d’irrigation.

    Or les cultures irriguées sont actuellement limitées dans le bassin fluvial. Moins de la moitié des terres potentiellement irrigables — une surface estimée à 375 000 hectares — sont actuellement mises en valeur. Et seuls 90 000 des 130 000 à 140 000 hectares aménagés sont vraiment utilisables. Le nouveau projet permettra d’irriguer 13 000 hectares, mais aussi de renforcer l’intégration régionale tout en favorisant un aménagement polyvalent des ressources en eau afin d’accroître les revenus des communautés et d’améliorer leurs moyens de subsistance.

    Le village de Thilène, au nord du Sénégal, est l’illustration même des transformations majeures que peut apporter l’irrigation dans les communautés agricoles. Grâce à la mise en place d’un système d’irrigation alimenté par le fleuve Sénégal, les agriculteurs atteignent des niveaux de récolte record trois fois par an.

    « Avant, nous avions beaucoup de mal à avoir de l’eau », se souvient Mamba Diop, riziculteur et président de l’Union des agriculteurs de Thilène. « Aujourd’hui, tout le monde a de l’eau, et tout le monde peut cultiver du riz durant toute l’année. Nos revenus ont augmenté ; il n’y a plus d’exode rural car tous les jeunes s’intéressent désormais à l’agriculture. Nous avons même pu amener l’électricité dans tout le village et scolariser nos enfants».

    La même transformation est à l’œuvre au Mali voisin, où le fleuve Sénégal se forme à la confluence du Bakoye et du Bafing. Les communautés concernées y pratiquent une agriculture de subsistance qui ne leur a guère permis de connaître de jours prospères faute d’eau suffisante. Puis un nouveau système d’irrigation a été installé qui change la donne.

    « Notre activité principale est l’agriculture, c’est notre seule source de revenus », explique Sambali Sissoko, du village de Bafoulabé. « Nous sommes organisés en coopératives, et nous disposons chacun d’un lopin de terre sur lequel nous cultivons des choux, des oignons, des aubergines, des salades et du maïs. Désormais, nous pouvons arroser notre terrain, ce qui nous permettra d’obtenir de bonnes récoltes et davantage de revenus».

    Une protection sanitaire

    Les vastes projets d’infrastructures hydrauliques sont indispensables pour satisfaire les besoins croissants en nourriture et en énergie d’une population en expansion qui, selon les projections, va doubler tous les 25 ans. Mais ils s’accompagnent dans le bassin du fleuve Sénégal d’effets pervers : l’aggravation des maladies véhiculées par l’eau.

    Le paludisme, par exemple, affecte plus de 14 % des enfants de moins de 5 ans et 9 % des femmes enceintes, les deux groupes les plus vulnérables. Avec un taux de prévalence de la maladie de plus de 54 %, la Guinée arrive en tête de liste des pays riverains, tandis que la Mauritanie a le taux le plus faible, 1,2 %. Le taux recensé au Mali est de 3,1 % et au Sénégal de 2,1 %.

    Le projet vise donc à contrer ces effets grâce à une gestion adéquate des étendues d’eau et à la distribution de moustiquaires : 3,1 millions de moustiquaires imprégnées d’insecticide longue durée ont été distribuées, ce qui a contribué à accroître le taux d’utilisation de ce dispositif de prévention de 27,6 à 46 %. Pour de plus en plus de communautés vivant dans le bassin du fleuve Sénégal, le paludisme ne sera bientôt plus qu’un mauvais souvenir...

    Richard-Toll, une ville du nord du Sénégal située sur la rive gauche du fleuve, fournit un exemple frappant des progrès accomplis. La lutte contre le paludisme y a porté ses fruits, comme en témoigne le Dr Alassane Tall, médecin dans le centre de santé local : « À l’heure actuelle, nous n’avons presque aucun cas de paludisme ici », affirme-t-il en soulignant qu’à la suite de la distribution généralisée des moustiquaires, rares sont les foyers qui n’en sont pas pourvus.

    Sall Dieynaba Sy, mère de deux jeunes enfants, confirme le succès de la stratégie : « Le jour comme la nuit, toute l’année, mes enfants et moi dormons sous une moustiquaire».

    Un fleuve nourricier

    Deuxième activité économique après l’agriculture, la pêche dans le bassin du fleuve Sénégal souffre de pratiques non durables et de modifications du régime hydrologique qui nuisent aux moyens de subsistance de nombreuses communautés.

    Le projet s’emploie à appuyer le développement de zones de pêche et de l’aquaculture dans un certain nombre de régions du bassin fluvial en fournissant des fonds destinés à consolider les institutions organisant ce secteur, à développer des programmes de gestion durable des pêcheries, à valoriser les prises par l’amélioration des moyens de stockage et à financer des programmes de développement de l’aquaculture.

    « La pêche est notre activité principale, c’est elle qui nous permet de subvenir aux besoins de nos familles », explique Serigne Ba, pêcheur depuis trente ans et président de l’association piscicole du village de Thiago, au Sénégal. « Grâce à de nouveaux bateaux et de nos nouveaux filets, nous pouvons aller plus loin, pêcher plus profond et attraper davantage de poissons, que nous pouvons conserver plus longtemps parce que nous disposons maintenant de containers réfrigérés. Nous pouvons ainsi vendre nos poissons localement mais aussi à des marchés éloignés comme Richard-Toll».

    La coordination et la coopération, facteurs clés des transformations

    L’Organisation pour la mise en valeur du fleuve Sénégal (OMVS) a été établie en 1972 pour favoriser un développement coordonné des secteurs de l’eau et de l’énergie. Dirigée conjointement par la Guinée, le Mali, la Mauritanie et le Sénégal, l’OMVS coordonne les efforts de planification et d’investissement dans l’optique d’atténuer les risques liés aux investissements de grande envergure dans le secteur de l’eau et de partager leurs bénéfices entre tous les États riverains.

    Kabiné Komara, Haut-Commissaire de l’OMVS, souligne l’importance d’une stratégie pluridimensionnelle pour le développement durable du bassin du fleuve Sénégal : « Les 12 millions d’habitants riverains du fleuve figuraient parmi les plus pauvres de la région. Ce projet a amélioré les conditions sanitaires et contribué à l’accroissement des sources de revenus. Grâce à une meilleure gestion de la pêche, nous avons renforcé la sécurité alimentaire et permis une augmentation des revenus. Notre soutien à l’agriculture n’a pas seulement consisté à irriguer des champs : nous avons également fourni aux agriculteurs un ensemble de petits prêts, de conseils et de formations qui ont permis d’améliorer les techniques agricoles et de partager les connaissances ».

    Alors que les quatre pays du bassin du fleuve Sénégal œuvrent de concert à l’amélioration du bien-être de leurs populations, il ne fait aucun doute que la coordination active et la coopération rapprochée conduisent à des résultats.

    « La deuxième phase du projet d’aménagement polyvalent du bassin du fleuve Sénégal aide les communautés à assurer leur croissance économique, à améliorer leur bien-être et à s’adapter au changement climatique », conclut Shelley McMillan, spécialiste des ressources en eau et chef d’équipe du projet. « Ce modèle de collaboration offre des perspectives très prometteuses pour d’autres régions de l’Afrique subsaharienne ».


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    Source: World Bank
    Country: Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Senegal

    STORY HIGHLIGHTS

    • Guinea, Mali, Mauritania and Senegal are taking the next steps toward managing precious water resources
    • A new push will benefit over 4.5 million people living in communities along the Senegal River
    • The project is the first in a series of the wider US$1.5 billion Sahel initiative announced in November 2013

    WASHINGTON, December 5, 2013—The Senegal River courses through Guinea, Mali, Mauritania and Senegal, making its way to the Atlantic Ocean after traversing some of the driest, drought-prone parts of western Africa.

    As with any shared water resource, the Senegal River is a major economic, social and cultural lifeline for over 35 million people, 12 million of whom live in its river basin which has a surface area of 300,000 square kilometers.

    The US$228.5 million Senegal River Basin Multipurpose Water Resources Development project approved today by the World Bank Group’s Board of Directors marks a new push to alleviate water scarcity and improve farming prospects for millions of people in the four riparian countries. The project is the second phase of a multi-sector, multi-country 10-year program working to bring more food, energy, irrigation and to meet other development targets.

    Boost for Farming

    Take rice, a major staple food and preferred cereal of choice across much of western Africa. Along the banks of the Senegal River and deeper into the delta, cultivating rice is a major occupation and principal source of food and income security for farming communities whose fortunes largely depend on the availability of water for irrigation.

    Currently, irrigated farming is limited. Less than half of the Senegal River basin’s irrigation potential, estimated at 375,000 hectares, is developed. Of the 130,000 to 140,000 hectares that are developed, only 90,000 hectares are really usable. The new project will bring irrigation to 13,000 hectares, enhance regional integration and promote multi-purpose water resources development to increase incomes and improve community livelihoods.

    Thilene village, in northern Senegal, is an archetypal example of how transformative impact can be achieved by providing farmers with irrigation. There, a new irrigation system fed by the Senegal River is boosting rice production enabling farmers to achieve record rice harvests three times a year.

    “In the past we used to have great difficulties accessing water,” said Mamba Diop, an enthusiastic rice farmer. “Today everybody has water, and everybody can farm all year long. This has increased our revenues; rural-urban migration has stopped because all the young people are interested in agriculture. We were even able to electrify our village and send our kids to school.” Diop also serves as President of the Thilene Farmers Union.

    A similar story is playing out in neighboring Mali, where the Senegal River is formed through the merging of Bakoye and Bafing rivers. Here, communities have practiced subsistence agriculture, and lack of irrigation has meant that prosperity had remained elusive until a new irrigation system was installed.

    “Our main activity is farming, that’s our only source of income,” said Sambali Sissoko, a farmer in Bafoulabé village. “We are organized in cooperatives and each one of us has a piece of land where we grow cabbage, onions, eggplant, lettuce and maize. We are now able to water our land, and we will have a good harvest and more revenues.”

    Protecting Human Health

    Water-related diseases associated with large water infrastructure projects are prevalent in the Senegal River basin, a necessary tradeoff of continuing efforts to meet burgeoning food and energy needs for a growing population that is projected to double every 25 years.

    For example, malaria affects over 14% of kids under age five and 9% among pregnant women, the most vulnerable groups. Among the riparian countries, Guinea tops the list with the highest prevalence rate of over 54%, while Mauritania has the lowest prevalence rate of 1.2%. Mali and Senegal have each reported prevalence rates of 3.1% and 2.1% respectively.

    Thanks to proper management of water bodies and distribution of mosquito nets, more and more communities living in the Senegal River basin are close to seeing malaria banished from their lives. The project has already distributed 3.1 million long-lasting insecticide treated bed nets. As a result, the use of nets has increased from 27.6% to 46% overall.

    The example from Richard Toll, a town lying on the south bank of the river in northern Senegal, is illuminating. Commenting about how the battle against malaria is being waged successfully, Dr. Alassane Tall, a physician at the local health center noted that thanks to large-scale distribution of mosquito nets, it is very rare to enter a home in Richard Toll and not find a mosquito net. “Today, we have almost no occurrences of malaria here,” he asserted.

    In an interview, Sall Dieynaba Sy, a mother of two young children attested to the success of the mosquito net distribution strategy, adding “Every day, every night, all year long, my children and I sleep under a mosquito net.”

    Fish for Food

    After agriculture, fishing is the next most important economic activity in the Senegal River basin. Unsustainable fishing practices and changing hydrology are negatively impacting livelihoods in many communities.

    To support development of inland fisheries and aquaculture in selected areas of the river basin, the project is providing funding for strengthening fisheries-related institutions, development of sustainable fisheries’ management programs, support for enhancing the value of fish catches through better storage infrastructure, and finance of aquaculture development programs.

    “Fishing is our main activity, that is how we are able to provide for our families,” said Serigne Ba, who has been practicing the craft for three decades and is President of the fishery association in village Thiago, Senegal. “With the new fishing boats and nets, we are able to go further in the river, catch more fish, and conserve the fish for a longer time because we now have refrigerated containers. This allows us to sell fish locally and to markets far away such as Richard Toll.”

    Coordination and Cooperation Vital for Transformative Impact

    The Organization for the Development of the Senegal River Basin (known by its French acronym, OMVS) was established in 1972 to promote coordinated water and energy development. Jointly governed by Guinea, Mali, Mauritania and Senegal, the OMVS is spearheading coordinated river basin planning and investment so that the risks of large-scale water investment are mitigated and the benefits are shared among the riparian states.

    Speaking to the importance of a multi-pronged approach to sustainable development of the Senegal River basin, Kabiné Komara, High Commissioner of the OMVS said: “Over 12 million people living along the river used to be the poorest in the area. This project has improved health conditions and contributed to improved livelihoods. Through improved management of fisheries, food security has improved and revenues have greatly increased. In supporting agriculture, we didn’t just establish irrigated fields, but also provided farmers with guidance and training along with small loans that allowed for the improvement of agricultural techniques and sharing of knowledge sharing.”

    As the four countries of the Senegal River basin work to improve the well-being of their people, it is clear that active coordination and close cooperation is delivering results.

    “The second phase of the Senegal River Basin Multipurpose Water Resources Development project is helping communities to secure economic growth, improve well-being and cope and adapt to climate change,” said Shelley Mcmillan, Senior Water Resources Specialist and project leader. “This model of collaboration holds significant promise in other parts of Sub-Saharan Africa.”

    Watch the video


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    Source: World Bank
    Country: Burkina Faso

    WASHINGTON, December 5, 2013 - The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors today approved US$100 million from the International Development Association (IDA)* to support the Government of Burkina Faso’s ongoing efforts to catalyze private-sector growth and job creation, improve governance and enhance public-resource management, build economic resilience and reduce the vulnerability of its many farmers to drought and other shocks.

    “Burkina Faso’s Government has built an impressive record of economic stability, a record which it has maintained in the face of serious and unpredictable shocks ranging from recurrent droughts in its agricultural regions to instability and conflict in its neighboring countries,” said World Bank Country Manager for Burkina Faso Mercy Miyang Tembon. “Today’s program will focus on removing obstacles to employment growth in the country’s private sector as a whole, while also devoting particular attention to agriculture, the country’s primary source of employment and a critical safeguard against food insecurity.”

    Today’s funds support Burkina Faso’s Third Growth and Competitiveness Operation, the third in a series of operations that support the government’s new generation of poverty reduction strategy papers, the Strategy for Accelerated Growth and Sustainable Development (Stratégie pour la Croissance Accélérée et le Développement Durable – SCADD), adopted on March 16, 2011.

    The Third Growth and Competitiveness Credit Operation has three pillars. The first pillar supports efforts to promote private-sector-led growth by improving the functioning of the agricultural input market, facilitating increased trade flows by reducing the administrative cost of cross-border trade, and promoting investment in private transportation capital. Under Pillar 2, the program supports measures to increase transparency in the mining sector, enhance the effectiveness and accountability of the judicial system, and consolidate key reforms in public financial management.

    “The direct beneficiaries of today’s funding include farmers, importers, communities in mining regions, female entrepreneurs, and communities vulnerable to food insecurity,” said World Bank Task Team Leader Samba Ba. “I look forward to effective implementation of policy reforms included in this program so that it can help transform high economic growth rates into widespread employment, broad-based poverty reduction, improved food security and the delivery of basic social services to all of the communities in Burkina Faso.”

    Under Pillar 3, the program’s actions are aimed at strengthening the resilience of the economy by improving local communities’ capacity for social-service provision, expanding access to credit, especially by female entrepreneurs, and reinforcing national food security and food-crisis preparedness.

    *The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing loans (called “credits”) and grants for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 81 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change for 2.5 billion people living on less than $2 a day. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 108 countries. Annual commitments have increased steadily and averaged about $15 billion over the last three years, with about 50 percent of commitments going to Africa.

    MEDIA CONTACTS

    In Washington
    Aby Toure
    tel : 202 473-8302
    akonate@worldbank.org

    In Ouagadougou
    Lionel Yaro
    tel : +226 50 49 63 00
    lyaro@worldbank.org

    PRESS RELEASE NO:
    2014/224/AFR


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    Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid department
    Country: Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger, Nigeria

    Just after harvests and despite a decent agricultural season, at least 16,7 million Sahelians, including North Nigerian remain in a state of food insecurity. This is the highest number of food insecure people reported at this period of the year in the last ten years. Large-scale food assistance is required from now on until September 2014.

    UNICEF estimates that 1,6 million children under five will be affected by severe acute malnutrition in 2014, i.e. 300 000 more than in 2013. The growing numbers of malnourished children, steered by high population growth involve maintaining high treatment capacities and to upscale actions to prevent malnutrition.


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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: Malawi, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

    LILONGWE – The United Kingdom has contributed US$22 million (MWK 8.4 billion) to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) to assist Malawian families who are unable to meet their basic food needs. This contribution will enable WFP to provide food assistance to some 910,000 people for several months of the ‘lean season’, between now and March when the next harvest is due.

    Many households in Malawi do not have enough to eat as a result of a particularly poor harvest caused by bad weather. The high price of maize, the nation’s staple, is also placing pressure on food-insecure families. The full extent of the situation has recently been confirmed by an updated report from the Malawi Vulnerability Assessment Committee (MVAC) which found that more than 1.85 million people will need food assistance between now and March 2014. This is a 27 percent increase on an earlier estimate of 1.46 million people. An additional three districts now require assistance.

    WFP aims to scale up its relief operation progressively to reach most vulnerable people at the height of the lean season in January-March in all 24 affected districts.

    “This contribution from the UK will enable us to provide both food and cash transfers,” says WFP Country Director Coco Ushiyama. “Such support is vital for families with little to harvest, few wage-earning options and who are struggling to buy food that is beyond their means.”

    More than half of the UKaid funds will be used to buy commodities including maize, pulses and SuperCereal, a fortified corn soya blend that can be made into a nutritious porridge. About 20 percent of the funds will go towards assisting people through cash transfers in areas where market conditions allow.

    “DFID is pleased that this UK contribution will help to ensure food security for over a million people during the critical lean period to March 2014,” says Head of DFID Malawi Sarah Sanyahumbi. “Our hope is that the food and cash distributions will not only alleviate hunger but will also help prevent poor families from having to resort to destructive coping mechanisms with long-term negative impacts on the family, natural resources and agriculture. We believe that if vulnerable people don’t have to worry about where their food is coming from, they can use their time and labour in their fields and break the vicious circle of food insecurity and poverty.”

    As part of its Purchase for Progress initiative, WFP will use the UKaid funds where possible to buy food from local smallholder farmers who have not been affected by crop failure – and who will thus have an opportunity to connect with markets and boost their income.

    Additionally, UK funds will provide protection and support to the most vulnerable (including young children and pregnant and nursing mothers) through school feeding and treatment of moderate acute malnutrition.

    UKaid has also contributed US$ 3 million (MWK 1.1 billion) to ensure WFP school meals are provided for up to 800,000 students during the lean season and US$ 2 million (MWK .76 million) to expand treatment for malnutrition in food-insecure areas for up to 18,000 malnourished children, pregnant women and nursing women.

    Since 2002, the United Kingdom has contributed more than US$70 million to WFP programmes in Malawi.

    #

    For more information please contact: Rachael Wilson, Reports Officer, WFP Malawi, Email: rachael.wilson@wfp.org, Tel. +265 1 774 666 Andrew Massa, Programme Officer, UK Department for International Development, Email: a-massa@dfid.gov.uk, Tel. +265 1 772 657

    About the World Food Programme: WFP is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. Last year, WFP reached more than 97 million people in 80 countries with food assistance.

    For more information about WFP in Malawi: http://www.wfp.org/countries/malawi

    #

    About the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (UKaid):

    DFID is the Department for International Development, leading the British Government’s fight against world poverty. In Malawi we work to help alleviate poverty, support economic growth and encourage good governance.

    For more information about DFID’s work in Malawi visit https://www.gov.uk/government/world/organisations/dfid-malawi


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