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ReliefWeb - Updates

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    Source:  Oxfam
    Country:  Niger (the)

    International aid agency Oxfam on Wednesday warned that devastating floods in Niger are affecting more than 500,000 people, most of whose basic needs are not being met.

    Floodwaters in Niamey and surrounding regions have unrelentingly risen since rains began in July, destroying thousands of houses and over 7,000 hectares of crops. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs estimates that more than 80 people have already died from the floods.

    Oxfam calls for a scale-up of aid efforts to assist the most vulnerable families affected by the floods and help them survive this crisis.

    ”Although rain is needed, this year’s excessive rains have destroyed thousands of houses and farmland, and families already struggling to survive have lost everything. These floods were the last thing the country needed,” said Samuel Braimah, Country Director for Oxfam in Niger.

    Earlier this year, drought across the broader Sahel region brought about a hunger crisis that continues to affect over 5.5 million people in Niger, and cholera has killed up to 96 people so far. Now, exceptionally high food prices, combined with the loss of crops to the floods, are diminishing Niger’s capacity to overcome its challenge to feed its own population.

    To respond to the floods, Oxfam and its partners are distributing household kits including soap, mats and mosquito nets, and water and sanitation provisions to almost 40,000 people. Distributions are ongoing in Niamey, Tillabéry, Zinder and Maradi, and will be followed by assistance to rebuild their houses and earn a living.

    “This is an urgent situation for everyone. As a temporary measure, schools in Niamey are sheltering flood victims, but thousands of students have to go back to school, and the beginning of the school year has already been postponed by two weeks,” said Braimah.

    In addition to the emergency assistance provided, a longer-term solution is needed for families to get back on their feet and avoid being flooded again in the future, pressing the need to support and enforce the government’s existing mechanisms to deal with crises.

    Contact Information

    For more information or interviews, please contact:


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    Source:  Government of the United States of America
    Country:  United Republic of Tanzania (the)

    As the Ambassador drove away from the Feed the Future irrigation scheme, model farm, and the farmers he met, he stated “I am impressed and inspired by the work that is happening; Feed the Future and the American people are making a big difference here in Tanzania.”

    On Tuesday, September 11th 2012, US Ambassador to Tanzania, Alfonso Lenhardt spent the day visiting Feed the Future activities in Morogoro, Tanzannia. Located approximately 160 miles outside of the commercial and economic capital of Dar es Salaam, Morogoro is where several components of the Feed the Future Initiative merge – positively impacting the 954 member Water Users Association in the Dakawa district. The Ambassador’s visit builds on the successful Press Tour held as part of Global Economic Statecraft Day in June. Eager to hear their stories, Ambassador Lenhardt met with several farmers from the Water Users Association and cheerily peppered them with questions about the training they had received, the types of seeds they use, and how they plan to invest their increased earnings. He also toured the Demonstration Plot, where the farmers received their training.

    While visiting with Victoria Urio, a progressive farmer who reported a 73% increase in her rice harvest as a result of Feed the Future interventions, the Ambassador stated, “The important work you do here has the potential to feed not just Tanzania, but all of Africa; Tanzania has more than enough land and water to become a bread basket for the region.” Veronica and her husband, Anaeli Urio engaged in a small experiment for their harvest this year. They each have 12 acres of land and Veronica planted the rice using the training, hybrid sees, and enhanced technology she learned through Feed the Future, while her husband used the traditional method of planting. Veronica usually gets about 2.2 tons of rice per acre and this year she reaped 3.8 tons per acre – a substantial increase. Her husband’s harvest remained the same, with no increase. He intends to apply the technology and training to increase his yield next season.

    The Ambassador also visited the Dakawa Pump Station, which is the water source all 954 association members use for irrigating their crops. The Pump Station, which is using its original technology from the 1960’s, is severely outdated. Ambassador Lenhardt quickly identified the broken pumps and understood how much hard work had to be done to keep the few working pumps operating. He congratulated the farmers on their efforts to keep the Pump Station functioning for as long as they had. The Feed the Future Irrigation Project will break ground for a new Pump Station on September 15th. A groundbreaking ceremony is expected to take place during October and President Kikwete has expressed interest in attending the important event.

    Ambassador Lenhardt returned to Dar es Salaam inspired by the work happening through Feed the Future and the potential for greater impact as the Initiative continues to scale up throughout the country. Additionally, the Ambassador will continue conversations with the Chinese about how to engage in meaningful work to benefit the Tanzanian people.


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    Understanding this map

    This map illustrates the degree of difficulty faced by humanitarian agencies working in Somalia with an analysis made at district level. It is not a reflection of the physical presence of humanitarian partners or of the volume of humanitarian assistance provided in each district.

    The “Access Coefficient” is based on eight indicators: International staff presence (UN and INGOs), UN staff movements, NSP security risk assessments, Humanitarian flights, Administrative Impediments & Check-points, Security incidents affecting humanitarian agencies, Perception of international humanitarian organizations and Stability of the area. Each of these indicators is evaluated and receives a notation from 1 (extremely negative) to 5 (positive), based on standardized assessments.

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

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    Source:  Government of Lesotho
    Country:  Lesotho

    Netcare Education conferred certificates to 25 professional nurses during a graduation ceremony held at Queen 'Mamohato Memorial Hospital on Thursday.

    The graduates completed a one and half year training specialising in areas of accident and emergency, intensive care unit and theatre.

    Speaking at the event, the Director General of Health Services in the Ministry of Health, Dr Mpolai Moteetee congratulated graduates for pursuing special courses in their training, noting that this will be beneficial to Basotho.

    She noted that lack of emergency skills contributes to high rate of maternal mortality in the country and such challenges can only be defeated if nurses are competent.

    In conclusion, Dr Moteetee urged the hospital staff to efficiently and effectively serve Basotho.

    Sharing same sentiments, Head of Netcare Education, Mrs. Toy Veermak expressed her gratitude and satisfaction for seeing the fruits of their work.

    She reminded nurses of their responsibility, urging them to have the capacity to provide unconditional care to patients as well as to remain competent.

    Mrs. Veermak congratulated the graduates and further urged them to continue in learning and to share their knowledge with other staff.

    On behalf of the graduates, Miss Nthuseng Ts'osane expressed their appreciation to the hospital and Netcare Education for granting them an opportunity to further their studies,

    She noted that the training was a long journey for them as it was full of challenges.

    She concluded by urging her colleagues to serve Basotho with love and passion.

    This is the first bunch of Netcare Education graduates since the inauguration of Queen 'Mamohato Memorial Hospital. There were 50 students (professional nurses) who enrolled for the training but only 25 managed to complete their training.

    Source: LENA 21/09/2012


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    Source:  International Organization for Migration
    Country:  Yemen, Ethiopia, Netherlands (the), Somalia, United States of America (the)

    An IOM-charter flight carrying 275 stranded Ethiopian migrants from Yemen to the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa will leave Al-Hodeida airport on Tuesday (25/9/12.)

    The flight, which was funded by a USD 2.1 donation from the Netherlands, follows two other Dutch-funded charters on Tuesday and Wednesday (18 & 19/9) of this week carrying another 551 migrants. A third charter, carrying 89 medical cases and victims of trafficking, funded by the USA, left Yemen earlier this month.

    The returnees represent less than a quarter of some 4,000 near destitute Ethiopians currently living in the open in and around Yemen's northwestern town of Haradh. All of them became stranded there after trying and failing to cross into Saudi Arabia in search of jobs.

    IOM's limited funding means that the most vulnerable, including women, children, the elderly and unaccompanied minors, are given priority on the flights back to Ethiopia.

    IOM has a migrant response centre in Haradh designed to house up to 150 people. It is currently providing shelter to some 350 of mostly sick and infirm migrants.

    The vast majority of the migrants leave poverty-stricken lives in Ethiopia in search of jobs in the Gulf. They embark on a dangerous journey through the Horn of Africa, across the Gulf of Aden and through conflict-ridden Yemen, with the help of smuggling networks.

    Those lucky enough to survive the journey often find themselves stranded and destitute at the Saudi Arabian border, unable to progress further. The most vulnerable, including women and unaccompanied minors, live at risk of kidnap, exploitation and assault by smugglers and criminal gangs.

    IOM medical staff at the border also report widespread health problems caused by lack of food, poor sanitation and sleeping in the open. Casualties arising from gunshots and landmines are also rising.

    Since 2010 IOM has provided urgent medical assistance to over 35,031 Ethiopian migrants stranded in Yemen, and has helped over 9,000 of them to return home from Yemen.

    But demand for urgent return assistance far outstrips the number of flights that IOM can provide. IOM Haradh staff say that at any given time there are up to 1,000 migrants asking for help to return to Ethiopia.

    Meanwhile, the number of irregular migrants from the Horn of Africa arriving in Yemen continues to rise. According to UNHCR, 63,800 Ethiopians and Somalis arrived in Yemen by sea in the first seven months of this year, up from 48,700 in 2011. The proportion of Ethiopian migrants also rose. In 2011, a total of 103,000 Ethiopian and Somalis arrived, up from 53,000 recorded in 2010.

    For further information, please contact Dr Teresa Zakaria at IOM Yemen, Tel: + 967 736700311, Email: tzakaria@iom.int or Lilian Ambuso, Email: lambuso@iom.int


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    Source:  International Organization for Migration
    Country:  Yemen, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Somalia

    The Regional Committee on Mixed Migration for the Horn of Africa and Yemen will hold its second meeting in Djibouti on 23- 24 September 2012.

    The meeting, which will be hosted by Djibouti and organized by IOM, follows an earlier event held in Addis Ababa in December 2011 and will include member government delegations from Djibouti, Ethiopia, Somaliland, Puntland and Yemen.

    Egypt, Eritrea and Saudi Arabia will also attend as observer states, together with representatives from the donor community, IGAD, the AU, UNHCR and NGOs.

    The meeting aims to improve collaboration between governments in the Horn of Africa and Yemen, and their international partners, to improve the condition of migrants, save lives and more effectively manage migration in the region.

    Participants will review progress on 2011 recommendations relating to rescue at sea, smuggling and trafficking, and the role of Migration Response Centers (MRCs) operating in the region. They will also assess the situation of migrant health and examine ways to extend medical services to migrants.

    The Horn of Africa has unique migration challenges. Every month thousands of irregular migrants and asylum seekers attempt to cross borders to escape conflict, drought and economic difficulties. In the process, many regularly perish or disappear.

    In the first seven months of 2012, 63,800 migrants arrived in Yemen from the Horn of Africa - a 30% increase from the same period in 2011. If the trend continues, 2012 may be the highest number of migrant arrivals yet recorded.

    Migrants make the journey from their places of origin in the Horn of Africa through Puntland and Somaliland to Djibouti and across the Gulf of Aden to Yemen and the Gulf States.

    For more information please contact Craig Murphy at IOM Nairobi, Email: cmurphy@iom.int - Tel: +254 717 711 822


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    Source:  Kenya Red Cross
    Country:  Kenya, Somalia

    A nutrition survey is being carried out in all refugee camps in Dadaab beginning with IFO2 (East and West) which are being managed by the Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS). The survey has been taking place from 19th September 2012. The UNHCRSENS (Standardised Expanded Nutrition Survey) is the method being used. This is a method that was developed to ensure that nutrition survey data is standardised for all refugee camps in the world and is based on the SMART methodology.

    Android Technology is being used whereby questionnaires are loaded onto smart phones and the team leaders fill them out as they interview beneficiaries.The survey is not only looking at the nutrition but all other aspects that influence nutrition, such as sanitation, food aid and clean and safe water accessibility.

    In Dadaab, four questionnaires are being used during the data collection which is set to begin on the 19th of September 2012. The questionnaires include: The Household (HH) questionnaires (12 HH to be visited per team per cluster), Children six to 59 months questionnaire (20 children to be measured per team per cluster), Women aged 15 to 49 years questionnaire (10 women per team per cluster) and Infant questionnaire (four infants per team per cluster)

    At least 30 clusters will be covered in IFO 2 East and West. There are five teams going out to the field daily over a period of six days. The team comprises team leaders (National staff), two measurers (Community Health Workers), one haemocue operator and a community liaison person.


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    Source:  West Africa Network for Peacebuilding
    Country:  Mali, Algeria, Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Mauritania, Niger (the)

    CONFLICTS AND INSECURITY: THREAT TO ECOWAS INTEGRATION AGENDA

    The Second Quarter of 2012 witnessed an upsurge of violence in most countries in the sub-region. The Malian rebellion continues to linger on, violent extremism continued unabated in Nigeria and a coup attempt foiled in Cote d’Ivoire. A coup d'état in Guinea Bissau following the death of the former president and in the build-up to the 2nd round of its presidential election exacerbated the volatility of the region which was recuperating from an earlier coup in Mali. These events signal grave security implications for the entire sub region.

    Insurgency has sustained in the North of Mali where Islamist militants have capitalized on the disharmony within the army and government in Bamako to relentlessly unleash terror on the citizenry. This situation has generated massive refugees and internally displaced persons which pose a threat to the neighbouring countries and across the sub-region. So far, an estimated number of 350,000 refugees have crossed Malian borders into Mauritania, Niger, Algeria and Burkina Faso thus compounding an already deepening humanitarian crisis due to drought and famine.

    Conflict and insecurity in Mali has compounded the complex humanitarian emergency and vulnerabilities in the Sahel region, where food and nutrition crisis is affecting over 18 million people due to a combination of drought, high grain prices, environmental degradation etc. This scenario poses a serious concern as the inadequate food and non-food aids accessible to most host communities particularly in Burkina Faso has to be shared with Malian refugees.....

    Click on this link to read the full report on activities during the 2nd quarter of 2012


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    Source:  Medair
    Country:  Somalia

    by Ed Nash, Medair Field Communications Officer

    Crowds of happy children greet me when I visit Muruqmal camp in Burao, Somaliland, energised and excited to see a visitor from Medair.

    Older children run out to meet me, but many of their younger siblings are obviously suffering from malnutrition. Babies and toddlers lie in their mothers’ arms, their exhausted eyes glazing over.

    When I speak to families in these displacement camps, most of them have been hit hard by malnutrition in some way. For the youngest children, malnutrition not only impacts their long-term physical and cognitive development but also has deadly consequences for them: one-third of all child deaths worldwide are linked to malnutrition [1]. Almost one in five children in Burao’s camps is suffering from malnutrition [2].

    Empty Stomachs A mother invites me into a fenced-off area around her shelter to chat. Milgo Hussein has lived in this camp for 10 years and has eight children between the ages of one and 15. “I feed the children twice a day,” she says. “They eat rice and, if we can afford it, a few vegetables.”

    Food is scarce for families like Milgo’s under normal conditions, but the drought in this region made things much worse. “When the drought was very harsh in this country, I was hungry myself,” she says. “I felt weak and my stomach felt empty. I could only get a very little milk from my one goat. I used it in tea, there was not enough to give milk to the children.”

    Milgo’s youngest daughter, one-year-old Fatha, became very sick. “She did not have enough to eat,” says Milgo. “She was weak and had diarrhoea.”

    From Weakness to Health Thankfully, Medair runs an integrated relief programme that helps reduce child malnutrition in camps like Muruqmal as well as in rural parts of Somaliland. When Milgo brought Fatha in to be seen by our team, we immediately enrolled her in a therapeutic feeding programme and gave her sachets of nutritious food. “Medair gave me special food to give to Fatha,” says Milgo. “She was so weak she could not eat it herself, so I fed it to her, a little at a time.”

    Fatha was weighed and measured regularly, and our staff checked in on her to monitor her recovery. With this treatment, Fatha gained weight and became much more active. “Fatha is now much better,” says Milgo. “The special food from Medair has been very good for her, it has made her better.”

    Medair also gives food rations to mothers of malnourished children like Milgo to help them feed their whole families. “With Medair’s help I am able to get rice, pasta, flour, dates, oil, and even a little sugar each month to feed my children,” she says. “The situation is difficult for us because we are so poor – this really helps us. My other children would also be malnourished without the food we receive from Medair.”

    Malnutrition continues to be a deadly threat for children in Somaliland, but evidence suggests that Medair’s approach is making a real difference here. The nutrition situation among Burao internally displaced persons has improved from “Very Critical” to “Critical,” thanks in part to increased humanitarian assistance. The Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit (FSNAU) specifically cited Medair’s contributions to the improved nutrition situation in its June 2012 report [2].

    Thank You I watch as healthy Fatha gurgles happily in her mother’s lap, breaking into squeals of joy when her mother tickles her under the arm. It is an honour to see firsthand the impact of Medair’s work: exhausted children brought back to health and families hopeful about the future once again.

    As someone who has encountered the people we are helping and seen how Medair has transformed their lives, I want to say thank you to all our donors. Thank you for believing in a better future for the impoverished people of Somaliland and thank you for helping Medair be a part of building up this country.

    [1] Source WHO www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs178/en/index.html [2] FSNAU Nutrition Update May-June 2012, available for download at www.fsnau.org/in-focus/fsnau-releases-nutrition-situation-update-somalia-may-june-2012


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    Country:  Somalia, Democratic Republic of the Congo (the), Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Saudi Arabia, South Sudan (Republic of), Sudan (the), Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania (the), Yemen
    Source:  Regional Mixed Migration Secretariat

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    Source:  UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country:  Somalia, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania (the), Yemen

    UNHCR Operation highlights

    Somalia is the country generating the third highest number of refugees in the world, after Afghanistan and Iraq.

    Somali people are facing one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world today. One in three Somalis is in urgent need of humanitarian assistance and one in every three children living in the South-Central region is malnourished.

    UNHCR leads protection and emergency relief interventions targeting almost 1.36 million IDPs, in addition to delivering protection and assistance to over 2,100 refugees in Somalia.


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    Country:  Somalia
    Source:  UN High Commissioner for Refugees

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    Source:  Agence France-Presse
    Country:  Mali

    09/21/2012 15:13 GMT

    NEW YORK (Nations unies), 21 sept 2012 (AFP) - Le Conseil de sécurité de l'ONU s'est dit prêt vendredi à "examiner une proposition réaliste" pour le déploiement d'une force panafricaine au Mali.

    Dans une déclaration, les 15 pays membres du Conseil indiquent avoir "pris note" de la demande d'assistance adressée par Bamako à la Communauté économique des Etats d'Afrique de l'Ouest (Cédéao) pour reconquérir le nord du pays contrôlé par des groupes islamistes.

    En réponse au souhait de la Cédéao d'avoir le soutien de l'ONU pour cette intervention, ils "se déclarent prêts à examiner une proposition réaliste et faisable de la part de la Cédéao qui réponde à la demande" du gouvernement malien.

    Ce plan militaire, suggèrent-ils, devrait détailler "les objectifs, les moyens et les modalités du déploiement d'une force régionale au Mali".

    Pour l'instant, le gouvernement malien et la Cédéao ne se sont pas mis d'accord sur une proposition précise à présenter à l'ONU et la Cédéao vient de demander à Bamako de revoir sa copie.

    Le président par intérim Dioncounda Traoré ne veut pas d'un déploiement de troupes ouest-africaines dans la capitale et demande que ces troupes se contentent d'apporter un soutien logistique et aérien sans combattre.

    Selon des sources diplomatiques, la Cédéao souhaite que les autorités maliennes acceptent le déploiement à Bamako d'un nombre minimum de militaires, notamment pour sécuriser les institutions de transition.

    Dans sa déclaration, le Conseil exprime aussi "sa profonde inquiétude devant les violations des droits de l'homme commises" par les islamistes dans le nord du pays et demande une nouvelle fois aux groupes rebelles maliens de se dissocier d'Al-Qaïda.

    Les 15 pays "réaffirment leur profonde inquiétude devant la détérioration de la situation humanitaire et de sécurité dans le nord du Mali et l'implantation croissante d'éléments terroristes dont Al-Qaïda au Maghreb islamique" dans cette région.

    Ils appellent une nouvelle fois les anciens putschistes maliens à "cesser immédiatement toute ingérence dans le travail" des autorités de transition à Bamako, sous peine de sanctions.

    Ils encouragent enfin l'ONU à mettre au point une "stratégie intégrée" pour le Sahel, dont les grandes lignes devraient être présentées lors d'une réunion internationale dédiée à ce sujet le 26 septembre à New York, en marge de l'Assemblée générale des Nations unies.

    avz/sam

    © 1994-2012 Agence France-Presse


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    Source:  Agence France-Presse
    Country:  Mali, France

    09/21/2012 14:24 GMT

    GENEVE, 21 sept 2012 (AFP) - La France, en partenariat avec le Bureau de coordination des affaires humanitaires de l'ONU, a lancé vendredi à Genève un "Groupe des amis du Sahel" pour renforcer la mobilisation et la coordination de l'action humanitaire en faveur de cette région.

    "Plus de 18 millions de personnes sont menacées par la crise alimentaire et plus d'un million d'enfants souffrent de malnutrition aigue", a souligné l'ambassadeur Nicolas Niemtchinow, représentant de la France auprès des Nations Unies.

    Il a noté que "la crise au Mali a eu pour effet d'aggraver la situation encore davantage" et estimé qu'au delà de la réponse urgente pour aider les populations il fallait à long terme "des politiques de réduction des risques et de renforcement des capacités des communautés".

    Ce Groupe, qui réunira régulièrement à Genève les experts des pays et des organisations humantaires devra renforcer la coordination des actions, mobiliser les donateurs et partager les informations.

    pjt/hr

    © 1994-2012 Agence France-Presse


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    Source:  Guardian
    Country:  Mali

    A coup, a displaced population and an Islamist rebel takeover in the north have left hundreds of schools closed for months.

    Read the full story on the Guardian.


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    Source:  UN News Service
    Country:  Mali

    21 September 2012 – The Security Council today reiterated its grave concern about the continuing deterioration of the security and humanitarian situation in northern Mali, and urged rebel groups in the country to cut off all ties to terrorist elements, including Al-Qaida in Islamic Maghreb and affiliated groups.

    In a press statement read by Ambassador Peter Wittig of Germany, which holds the Council’s rotating presidency for this month, the 15-member body voiced its concern about the “increasing entrenchment” of terrorist elements in the country and about the human rights violations perpetrated by rebel and extremist groups in the north.

    Earlier this week, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, condemned the ongoing human rights violations in northern Mali, including cruel punishments such as amputations and the stoning to death of an unmarried couple, and called on the Government and the international community to urgently address the crisis.

    “According to credible reports that my office has received, the various armed groups currently occupying northern Mali have been committing serious human rights violations and possibly war crimes,” Ms. Pillay said.

    Fighting between Government forces and Tuareg rebels broke out in northern Mali in January. The instability and insecurity resulting from the renewed clashes, as well as the proliferation of armed groups in the region, drought and political instability in the wake of a military coup d’état in March, have led over 250,000 Malians to flee to neighbouring countries, with 174,000 Malians estimated to be internally displaced.

    The Council, which was briefed on the situation by the UN Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Jeffrey Feltman, welcomed the appointment of a Government of National Unity in Mali, and voiced its support to the work of the Interim President, Dioncounda Traoré.

    The Council called on the transitional authorities “to continue ongoing efforts towards the strengthening of democratic institutions and the restoration of constitutional order” in Mali, through the holding of elections by the end of the transition. It also repeated its demand that all members of Malian armed forces cease immediately any interference in the work of the transitional authorities.

    In his briefing, Mr. Feltman called on the Council and the wider international community to support efforts to develop an integrated strategy to tackle the challenges in the Sahel region of West Africa, which are not only political but also involve security, humanitarian resilience and human rights.

    “The deep-seated fragilities stretching across the broad Sahel region of Africa are a matter of growing concern to the people and governments of the region, as well as to the broader international community and this Council,” he stated. “The threats and challenges cut across borders and disciplines and their solutions must be cooperative and comprehensive.”


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    Source:  NATO Civil-Military Fusion Centre
    Country:  Libya, Algeria, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Morocco, Somalia, South Sudan (Republic of), Sudan (the), Tunisia

    This document provides an overview of developments in the Mediterranean Basin and other regions of interest from 11 — 17 September, with hyperlinks to source material highlighted and underlined in the text. For more information on the topics below or other issues pertaining to the region, please contact the members of the Med Basin Team, or visit our website at www.cimicweb.org.

    Inside this Issue

    In Focus 1

    North Africa 2

    Northeast Africa 4

    Horn of Africa 6


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    Source:  Government of Lesotho
    Country:  Lesotho

    Executive summary

    This appeal document has been prepared by the Government of Lesotho for presentation to its Cooperating Partners, local business organizations, and citizens of good will. It is intended to mobilize emergency assistance to address the country's food insecurity situation as declared by the Right Honourable the Prime Minister of Lesotho on 9 August, 2012.


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    Source:  Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect
    Country:  Syrian Arab Republic (the), Central African Republic (the), Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo (the), Kenya, Myanmar, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan (Republic of), Sudan (the)

    CURRENT CRISIS

    Mass atrocity crimes are occurring and urgent action is needed.

    IMMINENT RISK

    The situation is reaching a critical threshold and the risk of mass atrocity crimes occurring in the immediate future is very high if effective preventive action is not taken.

    SERIOUS CONCERN

    There is a significant risk of occurrence, or recurrence, of mass atrocity crimes within the foreseeable future if effective action is not taken.

    Syria

    BACKGROUND

    As the conflict in Syria enters its eighteenth month, violence continues. With over 20,000 people killed already, fighting has now spread across all of Syria. On 15 July 2012 the International Committee of the Red Cross characterized the situation as a “non-international armed conflict” (civil war). On 10 September the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, expressed that “human rights abuses are rampant, and have reached the point where mass killings, summary executions and torture are the norm.”

    The UN Human Rights Council (HRC)-mandated Commission of Inquiry (CoI) issued a report on 15 August stating that government forces and allied “shabiha” militias committed crimes against humanity, war crimes and gross violations of human rights and international humanitarian law as a matter of state policy. The CoI also implicated armed opposition groups in the commission of war crimes, albeit on a smaller scale than that of the government. Civilians across Syria continue to bear the brunt of the conflict.
    According to the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), as of 14 September 1.5 million Syrians were internally displaced while 250,000 Syrian refugees have registered in neighboring countries.

    The Syrian government continues to target presumed antigovernment strongholds using artillery, tanks, helicopters and fighter jets. Allied “shabiha” militias and snipers have been deployed to attack communities, committing largescale massacres in several towns. Following several days of government bombardment, troops swept into the town of Daraya on 25 August, killing at least 320 people, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
    Opposition groups have responded to ongoing state violence by increasing their attacks upon pro-government forces, sometimes using heavy weapons. August saw government forces and armed opposition groups engaged in fierce fighting in Syria’s largest city, Aleppo.

    The government has experienced a growing number of defections to the Sunni-dominated opposition, including Syria’s Prime Minister, Riyad Farid Hijab, on 6 August. However, Alawites still form the core of the command structure of the regime’s security apparatus and, along with other minorities, have largely remained supportive.

    Armed opposition groups have not only been implicated in kidnappings, torture and extrajudicial killings of security forces, but in abuses committed against civilians due to their perceived support for the government.

    (Extract)


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  • 09/21/12--14:45: Lesotho Flash Appeal 2012
  • Source:  UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country:  Lesotho

    Lesotho has experienced a more than 70% drop in domestic agricultural production that has put more than 725,000 people, over a third of the population, at serious risk of food insecurity. The sharp reduction in agricultural yields for 2011/2012, due to a series of flooding, late rains and early frost, has reduced domestic production to only 32% of the national average cereal harvest of the last 10 years.

    The late onset of rains in the planting season (October-December 2011) following a bad agricultural season in 2010-2011 led to an increased proportion of uncultivated fields. Despite good rainfall in December 2011, cumulative precipitation remained below average almost countrywide for most of the cropping season, and the rains came towards the very end of the season for the main crops (maize and sorghum). Therefore, dry spells and late rains during the planting season prevented most farmers from cultivating their fields and those who decided to plant did it late, exposing themselves to early frost which affected the maturity and quality of the crop.

    This year's crop failures follow poor harvests last year, which has increased the vulnerability of many of the country's poorest farmers. In addition, traditionally more productive areas in the lowlands have also performed poorly this season. This, compounded by a sharp increase of at least 18% in the price of food has put further pressure on households, exacerbating an already precarious situation, making it almost impossible for many to meet their minimum food requirements.

    The data collected by the Government of Lesotho (GoL) as part of the Lesotho Vulnerability Assessment Committee (LVAC), as well as the recent rapid assessments conducted by USAID and monitoring evidences of ongoing programmes implemented by FAO, confirm the negative trend in cereal production country-wide.

    The June 2012 USAID/FFP food security assessment report conducted in the three ecological areas of the country, confirms high levels of people in food insecurity situation as a result of a poor harvests; reduction in remittances due to the global economic crisis that has severely negatively affected the region and led to reduction of employment opportunities in the country.

    On 9 August 2012 the Right Honourable Prime Minister of Lesotho declared an Emergency Food Crisis in Lesotho. On 13 September 2012 following the Declaration of Emergency, the GoL launched a Response Plan which they called „Appeal for Humanitarian Assistance’, requesting support from development partners and the international community for the period September 2012 to June 2013.

    In response to the GoL request for assistance, the humanitarian community will focus on the first six month of priority interventions to be included in this Flash Appeal. This includes time-critical interventions aimed to address the structural causes of the food security crisis.

    The process of developing this Flash Appeal involved the UN agencies in Lesotho under the UN-DRMT, government sector working groups under the Disaster Management Authority (DMA) and relevant NGO‟s such as Lesotho Red Cross Society, Catholic Relief Services, CARITAS, World Vision International and CARE. The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Regional Office for Southern Africa provided technical guidance and support

    The following are strategic objectives of this Flash Appeal

    • Strengthen the emergency response capacity of the GoL.

    • Address the immediate and life-saving needs in terms of facilitating access to food, money and agriculture production inputs (planting season starts in October) for the most vulnerable households.

    • To limit the use of negative coping mechanism of the vulnerable communities

    • To reduce the vulnerability to shocks and increase the resilience of vulnerable communities.

    In close coordination with the Government of Lesotho, and to complement its activities, the international humanitarian community, including NGOs, and United Nations agencies is seeking $38,458,738 to address the immediate needs of the 118,800 most deprived and most vulnerable persons and indirectly supporting all 725,000 affected persons in all agro-zones, focusing on three main areas affected by the prevailing situation in the country: a) Agriculture and Food Security; b) Health, Nutrition and c) Protection.


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