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    Source: University of Texas at Austin
    Country: Niger, World

    Hendrix on Water Security in the Sahel

    In CCAPS Research Brief No. 24, researcher Cullen Hendrix analyses water security in the Sahel region by examining a specific case study: Niger. Hendrix argues that Niger illustrates how strained water resources in a country can be "a source both of conflict and cooperation."

    Niger suffers from recurrent droughts and a wide variability in annual rainfall, straining agricultural output. This, combined with explosive population growth, has made Niger vulnerable to instability and violence. Competition over water and natural resources has led to conflict in Lake Chad and northern Niger.

    However the co-management of water resources can be an opportunity to cooperate, says Hendrix, as can be seen in collaboration between Niger and its neighbors in the establishment and continuing work of the Niger Basin Authority. Another example of cooperation is the reforestation of the Zinder and Yatenga regions of Niger and Burkina Faso, respectively – a project instigated by changes in farming habits on a local level.

    Hendrix concludes that local and international institutions thus have a role in "helping to pacify interactions around this critical natural resource [water]" and that water policy issues "need not [always] be high tech or guided by national-level policy."

    This brief is based on content created for the Navanti Group, and is used with their permission.


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    Source: Catholic Relief Services
    Country: Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, World

    December 10, 2014 by Jim Stipe

    Many Central American families are at risk of going hungry next year due to a record drought, the ongoing effects of a plague devastating coffee production and a rise in staple food costs.

    By some estimates more than 2 million people may be in need of food assistance, creating a need for humanitarian aid not seen since Hurricane Mitch struck the region in 1998.

    Because it has been serving in the region for more than 50 years, Catholic Relief Services is uniquely positioned to understand context and repercussions of the situation as well as innovative ways to confront it. Read below the breakdown of this slow moving crisis and our response.

    DROUGHT

    Below-average rainfall—in some areas as much as 75 percent less—since June has caused some of the worst dryness in 10 years, including the El Niño year of 2009. Because of the drought the governments of Guatemala and Honduras have declared a state of emergency.

    The worst affected areas are in eastern and western Guatemala, southwestern and southeastern Honduras, and northern and central Nicaragua, all of which make up what is known as the drought-prone Dry Corridor.

    Catholic Relief Services works in the Dry Corridor of Honduras with local partners and local business and service providers to provide tools and training to help families access water, improve their production of maize and beans, and grow gardens so that they have a constant and diverse source of food.

    COFFEE LEAF RUST

    The coffee leaf rust, a fungus that covers coffee trees in an orange-yellow dust, continues to hurt coffee production in the region. For the third consecutive year, demand for labor on coffee farms, a major source of income in Central America, is down.

    Because of the coffee leaf rust plague, there are fewer jobs as day laborers on coffee farms for them to fall back on and now, food prices are on the rise, creating a perfect storm of misfortune that will impact the region’s poorest families.

    “The coffee leaf rust has forced many to migrate from rural areas to cities as well as other countries,” said Juan Sheenan, Country Representative in Honduras. “Catholic Relief Services is working with coffee farmers so they can have access to leaf rust resistant coffee plants, as well as helping them diversify their crops so they have other sources of income.”

    RISING FOOD COSTS

    Subsistence farmers in hard-hit areas have lost up to 70 percent of their yearly bean and maize production. The decrease in supply, have exacerbated the costs of these products which are integral to the basic diet of people in Central America.

    As bad as things are now, the situation is bound to get worse in 2015. If predictions hold true, the regions’ upcoming harvest in January will show more losses, adding to food shortages in the region.

    A 2012 study by Catholic Relief Services, Tortillas on the Roaster, showed that higher temperatures and changes in rainfall patterns could transform the agricultural landscape of Central America, threatening the livelihoods of one million maize and bean farmers.

    “Equipping farmers to recover from the failed harvest and become more resilient to prolonged droughts in the future is key to avoiding a food crisis,” Sheenan said.


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama

    Destacados

    . La sequía prolongada impacta ya en la seguridad alimentaria y nutricional de cerca de dos millones y medio de personas en América Central.

    • Se reportan pérdidas de cultivos de maíz y frijol que oscilan entre el 54 a 75% en Honduras y alrededor del 75% en Guatemala.

    • En su mayoría, las personas afectadas son agricultores de subsistencia, jornaleros y familias de bajos recursos a lo largo del corredor seco.

    • En los próximos meses se podría esperar que la condición de inseguridad alimentaria se agrave, una vez se hayan agotado las reservas de alimentos.

    • En Guatemala, las reservas de 30,000 familias se terminaron en octubre y ya están aplicando estrategias de sobrevivencia1 .

    • El Sistema de Naciones Unidas ha movilizado recursos económicos y coordina, junto con los países afectados, los planes de respuesta a la emergencia.

    2.5 millones Población afectada por inseguridad alimentaria (Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador)

    75% Pérdidas aproximadas de cultivos de maíz y frijol

    US$2.6 millones del CERF destinados en Honduras

    US$17.1 millones requeridos para atender la situación en Guatemala

    US$13.2 millones requeridos para atender la situación en Honduras


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama

    Highlights

    • Prolonged drought impacted food security and nutrition for nearly two and a half million people in Central America.

    • Loss of maize and bean crops range from 54 to 75% in Honduras and about 75% in Guatemala.

    • The majority of people affected are subsistence farmers, labourers and low-income families living along the dry corridor.

    • In the coming months food insecurity is expected to worsen as families deplete their food stocks.

    • In Guatemala, 30,000 families finished their food stocks in October and are implementing survival strategies1 .

    • The UN System has mobilized financial resources and is supporting affected countries in coordinating emergency response plans.

    2.5 million People affected by food insecurity (Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador)

    75% Approximate losses of maize and bean crops

    US$2.6 million CERF funding for response in Honduras

    US$17.1 million Needed to address the situation in Guatemala

    US$13.2 million Needed to address the situation in Honduras


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    Source: Government of Guatemala
    Country: Guatemala

    La presidenta en funciones, Roxana Baldetti, informó que una alianza de los sectores público y privado generó la capacitación de más de 81 mil mujeres del campo en temas como seguridad alimentaria y nutrición. De acuerdo con datos del programa, de enero a este mes un total de 81 mil 141 mujeres de zonas rurales de Guatemala se prepararon en temas relacionados con la seguridad alimentaria, nutrición y educación básica.

    La población capacitada habita en 40 de los 166 municipios con prioridad en las acciones del Pacto Hambre Cero, que impulsa el gobierno para combatir la desnutrición, en especial la que afecta a niños de cero a cinco años de edad.

    La estrategia de capacitación de las mujeres del campo es resultado de una alianza público-privado entre el Ministerio de Desarrollo Social (Mides) y la Fundación del Azúcar (Fundazúcar), formalizada el 20 de noviembre del 2013.

    La presidenta en funciones reconoció a la entidad privada Fundazúcar por el apoyo brindado para la capacitación, que ha generado “un cambio radical” en las mujeres de las comunidades del interior”.

    “Agradezco a Fundazúcar por el apoyo que va desde pequeñas acciones como el lavado de manos antes de comer hasta llevar un control de sus hijos en peso y talla en los centros de salud”, precisó.

    Baldetti indicó que en 2015 el primer Gabinete de Desarrollo Social se realizará en el área rural para supervisar este trabajo en los departamentos con prioridad en el Pacto Hambre Cero.

    Para este proyecto se contó con un equipo técnico de 350 personas, integrado por miembros del Mides, coordinadores departamentales y delegados municipales. La meta de este programa es sensibilizar a 92.160 familias guatemaltecas en el corto plazo.

    El programa “Mejores Familias” se define como un modelo innovador, implementado por Fundazúcar desde hace 15 años, que promueve la seguridad alimentaria nutricional, capacitando a mujeres en edad reproductiva de 14 a 49 años.

    Durante ese tiempo se ha logrado que un 75 por ciento de las mujeres capacitadas lleguen a las metas establecidas en el proyecto, que además pretende incentivar las buenas prácticas de los programas de responsabilidad empresarial, que han mejorado las condiciones de higiene, salud y seguridad alimentaria de las familias.

    El programa abarca los cuatro pilares de la seguridad alimentaria nutricional: disponibilidad, acceso, consumo y utilización biológica de los alimentos.

    Last modified on Tuesday, 09 December 2014 17:14


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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Central African Republic, Chad, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Guatemala, Honduras, Iraq, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, World, Zimbabwe

    Conflict, Ebola and adverse weather exacerbate local food insecurity

    11 December 2014, Rome - Latest indications confirm that world cereal production will reach an all-time record of more than 2.5 billion tonnes in 2014.

    Buoyed by bumper crops in Europe and a record maize output in the United States of America, this year's cereal output should reach 2.532 billion tonnes, including rice in milled terms, or 0.3% higher than 2013, according to FAO's latest Crop Prospects and Food Situation Report.

    The record global cereal harvest in 2014 will outpace projected world cereal utilization in 2014/15, allowing stocks to rise to their highest level since 2000 and pushing the worldwide stock-to-use ratio, a proxy measure for supply conditions, to rise to 25.2 percent, its highest level in 13 years, according to FAO.

    However, the report also warns that food insecurity is worsening in a number of countries due to civil conflicts, adverse weather and the Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak. Some 38 countries are at risk of food insecurity, including 29 in Africa, 3 more countries than reported in October.

    EVD triggered one of the biggest shocks to West Africa's agriculture and food sectors, as it started to spread when crops were being planted and expanded throughout the farming cycle, especially in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. FAO warned that local rice prices and those for cassava, the region's second staple food, showed notable increases in Freetown and other cities in September.

    Adverse weather in the Sahel region is also expected to result in a sharply reduced harvest - by as much as 38 percent below average in Senegal.

    Conflict seriously impacts on food insecurity

    The situation in Syria is particularly urgent, as a weak harvest is exacerbating strains due to worsening civil conflict. An estimated 6.8 million people - some refugees in neighboring countries - are facing severe food insecurity. FAO reports a notable production decline for the 2014 crop, due to abandoned land, scarce labor, damaged power stations and canals as well as drought conditions.

    The situation in Iraq is also acutely serious, where the number of people displaced due to civil conflict has tripled since last year to 2.8 million.

    One third of the population is in need of urgent food assistance in the Central African Republic (CAR), where this year's food crop production is estimated to be 58 percent below average despite improving on 2013, FAO said. It noted an increase in violence since early October in a country where one in four households has resorted to negative coping strategies, including selling productive assets and slaughtering livestock.

    Prices of agricultural commodities shot up as much as 70 percent this year in the CAR. According to FAO, the decline in cereal output was partially mitigated by a large 45 percent jump in the production of cassava, which though less nutritious is less reliant on labor and other inputs.

    Refugee movements - especially from Sudan's Darfur region, northern Nigeria, the CAR and Mali - have put pressure on local food supplies, notably in Chad, where more than 550,000 people need food and livelihood assistance, according to the report.

    While the recent harvest and delivery of humanitarian aid has offered relief, more than 6 million people in South Sudan, Sudan and Somalia are deemed to be in need of food and livelihood assistance. Prices in those countries remain at high levels, with sorghum prices running as much as four times higher in some of the most conflict-affected areas, further deteriorating vulnerable people's access to food.

    Maize supplies stable in Southern and Eastern Africa

    Elsewhere in Africa conditions were better, especially in Southern Africa, where stable maize prices declined due to ample supplies from this year's bumper output boosted food security. More stable maize supplies also led to a 78 percent drop in the number of food-insecure persons in Zimbabwe.

    Recent harvests and favourable prospects for the second season crops helped push maize prices down in some countries of East Africa.

    Meanwhile, 2014 cereal crop production was slightly below average in North Africa, where Morocco suffered sharp reductions due to erratic rains while the output in Tunisia recovered after a poor 2013 harvest.

    Dry conditions result in reduced Central American harvest

    Mexico is enjoying a bumper maize crop and its cereal output is expected to increase by 7 percent above last year's record harvest, FAO said.

    That may ease the production short-fall expected in Central America, where a drought earlier in the year pushed the maize output down by around 9 percent, resulting in 400,000 families in Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala needing food assistance.

    Aggregate cereal output from Europe this year is estimated to be 5.6 percent higher than 2013, while the U.S.'s record maize output comes despite less acreage being sowed


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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Honduras, Iraq, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mexico, Mozambique, Niger, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Uganda, World, Yemen, Zimbabwe

    HIGHLIGHTS

    • World cereal production in 2014 is forecast to surpass last year’s record, boosting stocks to a 15-year high.

    • Maize export prices increased significantly in November supported by lower than previously expected yields of the 2014 crop in the United States of America. Wheat export prices strengthened in general, while rice quotations declined. Overall, however, cereal export prices persisted at levels below those of a year earlier, reflecting ample global supplies.

    • In Western Africa, the outbreak of the Ebola virus disease in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone continues to affect the food security situation of large numbers of people through the disruption of livelihoods, farming activities and markets. Moreover, adverse weather conditions in 2014 caused a sharp drop in cereal and pasture production in large parts of the Sahel, notably in Cabo Verde, the Gambia, Guinea-Bissau and Senegal.

    • In Central Africa, the food security situation remains grave in the Central African Republic with one-third of the population in need of urgent assistance.

    • In Eastern DRC, continued population displacements together with recent damaging floods aggravated food insecurity.

    • In Eastern Africa, the food security situation improved in most countries following recent harvests. However, in Somalia and the Sudan food prices remained at very high levels negatively impacting on food access.

    • In Southern Africa, prevailing stable maize prices reflect ample supplies from 2014’s bumper output, contributing to an improved food security situation.

    • In North Africa, a slightly below-average cereal crop was gathered in 2014. However, sharp reductions were recorded in Morocco due to erratic rains, while in Tunisia production recovered from the previous year’s poor harvest.

    • In the Near East, persistent conflicts continued to exacerbate food insecurity in the Syrian Arab Republic and in Iraq with the outflow of refugees affecting neighbouring countries. Urgent response to appeals for assistance is required. In addition, drought conditions resulted in poor harvests in the main producing countries.

    • In the Far East, the 2014 aggregate cereal harvest is estimated to remain high, despite a small decrease in the rice output.

    • In CIS Europe, the record 2014 cereal harvest was followed by concerns about the impact of the early onset of winter conditions on 2015 crops.

    • In Central America, excluding the main producer Mexico, the 2014 cereal production is forecast at a sharply reduced level. Crop losses reflect drought conditions during the main first season.

    • In South America, cereal production is estimated at an above-average level. The wheat output recovered strongly from the previous year’s low level, while maize production remained close to last year’s record.

    • FAO estimates that globally 39 countries, including 29 countries in Africa, are in need of external assistance for food due to conflict, crop failures and the impact of localized high food prices on vulnerable groups.


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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Central African Republic, Chad, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Guatemala, Guinea, Honduras, Iraq, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, World, Zimbabwe

    Mais les conflits, Ebola et les conditions climatiques défavorables exacerbent l’insécurité alimentaire

    11 décembre 2014, Rome – Les dernières indications confirment que la production céréalière mondiale devrait atteindre un niveau record de plus de 2,5 milliards de tonnes en 2014.

    Dopée par des conditions culturales favorables en Europe et une production record de maïs aux Etats-Unis, la production céréalière devrait atteindre plus exactement 2,532 milliards de tonnes, y compris le riz usiné, soit 0,3 pour cent de plus qu'en 2013, selon le dernier rapport de la FAO Perspectives de récoltes et situation alimentaire.

    Etant donné qu'elle dépassera l'utilisation, cette récolte céréalière mondiale devrait se traduire par une augmentation des stocks qui atteindraient leur plus haut niveau depuis 2000. Elle devrait également entraîner une hausse du ratio stock-utilisation mondial de 25,2 pour cent, soit son plus haut niveau depuis 13 ans, selon la FAO.

    Toutefois, le rapport avertit que l'insécurité alimentaire s'aggrave dans un certain nombre de pays en raison de troubles civils, de conditions climatiques défavorables et de l'épidémie d'Ebola. Quelque 38 pays sont à risque d'insécurité alimentaire, dont 29 en Afrique, contre 26 signalés en octobre dernier.

    L'épidémie d'Ebola a eu un impact très négatif sur l'agriculture et l'alimentation en Afrique de l'Ouest, car elle a commencé à se propager au moment où les cultures venaient d'être plantées, puis elle a englobé l'ensemble du cycle agricole, en particulier en Guinée, au Libéria et au Sierra Leone. La FAO a noté que les prix du riz local et du manioc, deuxième aliment de base de la région, avaient accusé, en septembre 2014, des augmentations notables à Freetown et dans d'autres villes.

    Dans la région du Sahel, de mauvaises conditions climatiques devraient entraîner de fortes baisses de production, notamment au Sénégal où les récoltes pourraient atteindre des niveaux inférieurs de 38 pour cent par rapport à la moyenne.

    Grave impact des conflits sur la sécurité alimentaire

    En Syrie, la situation est qualifiée de particulièrement urgente, car les faibles récoltes ont exacerbé les tensions causées par l'aggravation des troubles civils. On estime que 6,8 millions de personnes, dont beaucoup se trouvent dans les pays voisins, sont confrontées à une insécurité alimentaire grave. La FAO précise que la baisse importante des récoltes est due notamment à la sécheresse, à l'abandon des terres, à la rareté du travail et aux dégâts causés aux centrales électriques et aux canaux d'irrigation.

    La situation en Irak est également peu enviable, le nombre de personnes déplacées du fait des troubles civils ayant triplé depuis l'année dernière passant à 2,8 millions.

    En République centrafricaine (RCA), un tiers de la population a besoin d'aide alimentaire d'urgence, la production vivrière de cette année étant inférieure de 58 pour cent à la moyenne malgré l'amélioration de 2013. Dans ce pays où règne également la violence, la FAO note que, depuis début octobre, un ménage sur quatre recourt à des stratégies d'adaptation négatives, notamment la vente d'actifs de production et l'abattage du bétail. Voir le rapport de la mission d'évaluation FAO/PAM.

    Toujours en RCA, les prix des produits agricoles ont grimpé cette année de près de 70 pour cent. La baisse de la production céréalière a été partiellement compensée par une hausse de 45 pour cent de la production de manioc, une culture moins nutritive mais exigeant moins de travail et d'intrants, selon la FAO.

    Les flux de réfugiés – en particulier de la région du Darfour au Soudan, du nord du Nigéria, de la République centrafricaine et du Mali – ont accentué la pression sur les disponibilités alimentaires locales, notamment au Tchad où plus de 550 000 personnes ont besoin d'aide alimentaire, selon le rapport.

    Bien que les récentes récoltes et les livraisons d'aide humanitaire aient soulagé les populations, plus de 6 millions de personnes au Sud-Soudan, au Soudan et en Somalie ont besoin d'assistance. D'ailleurs, dans ces pays, les prix alimentaires restent fermes, notamment les prix du sorgho qui sont quatre fois plus élevés dans les zones les plus touchées par les conflits. Cela aggrave davantage l'accès des populations vulnérables à la nourriture.

    Stabilité des approvisionnements de maïs en Afrique australe et orientale

    Ailleurs en Afrique, les conditions sont meilleures, en particulier en Afrique australe où les prix du maïs, stables au départ, ont ensuite fléchi en raison de l'abondance des approvisionnements du fait de bonnes récoltes. Cela a quand même bénéficié à la sécurité alimentaire.

    A signaler qu'au Zimbabwe, la stabilité des approvisionnements de maïs a entraîné une baisse de 78 pour cent du nombre de personnes souffrant d'insécurité alimentaire.

    Les récoltes récentes et les perspectives de production céréalière favorables de la deuxième campagne ont contribué au recul des prix du maïs dans certains pays d'Afrique orientale.

    En Afrique du Nord, la production céréalière de 2014 a été légèrement inférieure à la moyenne. Les récoltes au Maroc ont souffert de l'irrégularité des pluies mais la production en Tunisie a récupéré après la mauvaise récolte de 2013.

    Sécheresse et récoltes réduites en Amérique centrale

    Le Mexique connaît une récolte exceptionnelle de maïs et sa production céréalière devrait être supérieure de 7 pour cent à la récolte record de l'année dernière, selon la FAO. Cela pourrait compenser la baisse attendue de la production de maïs en Amérique centrale. La sécheresse au début de cette année avait déjà entraîné un recul de la production d'environ 9 pour cent qui avait mis en situation d'aide alimentaire 400 000 familles au Honduras, à El Salvador et au Guatemala.

    A signaler enfin que la production céréalière totale de l'Union européenne en 2014 devrait être supérieure de 5,6 pour cent à celle de 2013, alors qu'une production de maïs record est attendue aux Etats-Unis malgré la diminution des surfaces ensemencées.


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    Source: African Development Bank
    Country: Mauritania

    La Banque africaine de développement (BAD) et le gouvernement mauritanien ont signé, ce 11 décembre 2014 à Abidjan, trois accords de don totalisant plus de 24 millions de dollars EU.

    Ces dons, destinés à favoriser une croissance inclusive dans le pays, financeront la composante mauritanienne du Programme de renforcement de la résilience à l’insécurité alimentaire et nutritionnelle au Sahel, ainsi que le Projet d’appui à la gouvernance pour la promotion d’une croissance inclusive et le Projet d’appui à la formation et l’emploi des jeunes dans le pays.

    « Promouvoir une croissance inclusive est l’une des priorités de la BAD dans ses interventions en Mauritanie », a rappelé, lors de la cérémonie de signature, le vice-président Aly Abou-Sabaa, chargé de l’agriculture, de l’eau, du développement humain, de la gouvernance et des ressources naturelles à la BAD.

    La signature de l’accord de don pour le Programme de renforcement de la résilience à l’insécurité alimentaire et nutritionnelle est hautement symbolique : « Nous avions promis d’apporter une plus grande assistance aux pays du Sahel pour y renforcer la sécurité alimentaire. C’est chose faite », s’est réjoui Abou-Sabaa.

    Ce programme, que la BAD finance à hauteur de 17 millions de dollars EU, est stratégique pour la Mauritanie. De fait, la région souffre depuis plusieurs décennies de crises climatiques et alimentaires à répétition, source de difficultés sérieuses pour la population et de fragilité persistante. Ce programme aidera donc à renforcer la résilience des populations vulnérables à l’insécurité alimentaire et nutritionnelle qui prévaut dans le pays, en leur donnant les moyens de résister par elles-mêmes aux aléas et aux chocs climatiques. Priorité sera ainsi donnée à la maîtrise de la gestion de l’eau, à l’amélioration de la production et de la productivité agricoles, à la sécurisation des moyens d’existence, à l’amélioration de la protection sociale des groupes les plus vulnérables, de l’accès aux aliments et à une optimisation de la nutrition.

    Le deuxième don, d’un montant de 3,3 millions de dollars EU, est destiné au Projet d’appui à la gouvernance pour la promotion d’une croissance inclusive. Celui-ci contribuera à réduire les obstacles qui entravent l’investissement privé. Ce, afin de promouvoir une croissance économique forte et inclusive, grâce à l’élaboration et la mise en œuvre de politiques en faveur de l’emploi des jeunes et des femmes et du développement du secteur privé.

    Enfin, le troisième don, dédié spécifiquement au Projet d’appui à la formation et l’emploi des jeunes, s’élève lui aussi à 3,3 millions de dollars EU. Les objectifs attendus du projet, approuvé le 28 novembre 2014, sont au cœur de l’agenda de la Banque pour la croissance inclusive en Mauritanie. Il offrira un appui technique pour doter le pays d’une politique de l’emploi volontariste, dont les objectifs et les activités concordent avec l’ensemble des stratégies des secteurs productifs. La mise en place d’un système d’information sur le marché du travail permettra de disposer d’un outil d’aide à la décision politique. Le projet vise également un meilleur ancrage de la formation dans le secteur productif en vue d’améliorer l’employabilité des jeunes.

    « La formation technique et professionnelle est une priorité du gouvernement mauritanien, qui apprécie cet appui de la BAD visant à renforcer l’adéquation de la formation avec l’emploi », a déclaré le ministre mauritanien des Affaires économiques et du Développement, Sidi Ould Tah.

    Le ministre a tenu également à remercier la BAD pour la célérité dont elle fait désormais preuve dans le bouclage de ses financements au profit de ses pays membres africains.

    Les trois accords de don signés ce 11 décembre 2014 permettront de répondre aux trois entraves majeures de la Mauritanie : une croissance insuffisamment partagée, une faible compétitivité et un certain déficit en matière de gouvernance.

    Ces trois dons portent le portefeuille actif de la BAD à 255 millions de dollars EU, dont 70 % sont dévolus au secteur privé.


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    Source: African Union
    Country: Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali, Nigeria, Somalia, Sudan, Uganda, World, Zimbabwe

    December 10, 2014 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia: In commemoration of the second year anniversary of the entry into force of the Kampala Convention, The Department of Political Affairs of the African Union Commission in partnership with the Internal Displacement Monitoring Center (IDMC) of the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) ­ Liaison Office with the AU, successfully concluded a two and half day training workshop on National Responsibility to protect IDPs. The training workshop took place in the African Union headquarters from 8th ­10th of December 2014.

    The workshop intended to aid the popularization of the Kampala convention for better IDP protection, by ensuring that participants­ Members of Parliament, members from relevant National Ministries and Government offices, humanitarian practitioners and civil society organizations familiarize themselves with the content of the convention and are able to disseminate it with a view to advocate for the ratification and the implementation of the Convention in their respective countries.

    The participants representing nine member states of the AU were from Côte d'Ivoire, Mali, Kenya, Democratic Republic Of Congo, Uganda, Somalia, Nigeria, Zimbabwe , Sudan and Ethiopia. The theme of the training workshop: National Responsibility to protect IDPs allowed representatives from the different countries to learn from each others experience as well as gave the country teams the opportunity to draft strategies for implementation of the Kampala Convention and share with all present in the last of the workshop. In addition, it also created a platform for experience sharing and discuss the role of the African Union in support of Member States and assistance in the operationalization of the Convention.

    The training workshop was officially opened with remarks from H.E. Ambassador Manuel Gonclaves­ Permanent Representative of the Republic of Mozambique­ Chair of the PRC Sub­Committee for Refugees, Returnees and IDPs together with Ms. Yemisrach Kebede Norwegian Refugee Council’s Resident Representative to the AU. The closing remarks were delivered by Prof. Khabele Matlosa, Director ­ Department of Political Affairs of the African Union Commission. Dr. Joseph Chilengi, Chair of the DPA cluster of the AU Economic, Social and Cultural Council (ECOSOCC) chaired the closing session.

    All speakers thanked the African Union, IDMC and NRC for organizing the significant training workshop and appreciated all participants for active and critical participation through out the training. Prof. Matlosa stressed that the Kampala Convention is one of the most important instruments in the AU and that the Department for Political Affairs would work to ensure the ratification of the convention. The objective is now to have universal ratification of the Convention.

    Media Contact:
    Michel Nshimba
    Political Officer Department of Political Affairs, AUC +251 912646116
    nshimba@africa­union.org, nshimba@hotmail.com

    Yemisrach Kebede
    Resident Representative to the AU
    Norwegian Refugee Council
    yemisrach.kebede@nrc.no


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    Source: UN Security Council
    Country: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Libya, Mali, Niger, Nigeria

    SC/11692

    7335th Meeting (AM)

    Weak institutions, cyclical environmental shocks, vast ungoverned spaces, fragile economies and poverty had contributed to suffering and created conditions for transnational criminal organizations in the Sahel, the Security Council heard today, as the Secretary‑General’s Special Envoy for the region said the need for sustaining the 15-member body’s attention there was “greater than ever”.

    The crisis in Burkina Faso and the persistent conflict in Mali attested to the fact that efforts in the Sahel would not be productive until the countries of the region committed to some standards of governance, said Hiroute Guebre Sellassie in her briefing.

    The security situation in the Sahel continued to be impacted by the crises in Libya, northern Nigeria, northern Mali and the Central African Republic, she said, adding that persistent allegations that the Islamic State had set up training camps in Libya were particularly worrisome. The unspeakable Boko Haram atrocities in northern Nigeria had become a major threat to some Sahel communities and countries.

    While the interconnections between terrorist and criminal networks in Libya, Mali and northern Nigeria were becoming clearer, she said, humanitarian indicators across the Sahel remained disquieting, with food insecurity, malnutrition, and displacements on the rise since the last reporting period.

    Highlighting achievements in mainstreaming the priorities of the United Nations integrated strategy for the Sahel into the existing programming frameworks in the resilience, governance and security pillars, she said several non-United Nations partners continued to implement complementary initiatives.

    Welcoming the integration of national strategies, the representative of the United States said the primary focus should not be so much on process, but on outcomes. The measure of success was real solutions that address security, humanitarian, and governance problems.

    The representative of Nigeria said that fighting extremist groups in the Sahel should remain a top priority for the international community, and Governments in the region must address the root causes of the extremism. There were many unique cultural and linguistic identities in the region, the representative of Jordan said, adding that marginalizing them only exacerbated the conflict.

    Speaking in his national capacity, the representative of Chad underscored that youth unemployment led to terrorism and extremism, and voiced confidence that the integrated strategy would bring about socioeconomic and governance benefits.

    The representative of the Russian Federation said it would be fundamentally flawed to view the region as a ground for competition among donors, warning against intervention in the internal affairs of countries under any pretext.

    Also making statements today were the representatives of Argentina, Australia, Chile, China, France, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Republic of Korea, Rwanda and the United Kingdom. Ms. Sellassie responded to comments and questions from representatives.

    The meeting began at 10:10 a.m. and ended at noon.

    Briefing

    HIROUTE GUEBRE SELLASSIE, the Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Sahel, said the particular and sustained attention of the Security Council had enabled a regional approach towards addressing regional challenges. The recent Ebola epidemic in Mali underlined the urgency of sustained efforts to prevent its spread. The crisis in Burkina Faso and the persistent conflict in Mali attested to the fact that efforts in the Sahel would not be productive until the countries of the region committed to some standards of governance.

    The security situation in the Sahel continued to be impacted by the crises in Libya, northern Nigeria, northern Mali and the Central African Republic. The persistent allegations that the Islamic State had set up training camps in Libya were particularly worrisome. If the situation in Libya was not quickly brought under control, many States in the region could be destabilized. In Mali, despite progress achieved in the inter-Malian talks in Algiers, the security situation in the north had deteriorated, with the intensification of deadly attacks targeting peacekeepers and communities along the border with Niger. It was encouraging that the recent meeting, hosted by Niger, of African troop-contributing countries to the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) had concluded that there was a need to strengthen regional security cooperation mechanisms. She was also pleased that the Council had held a brainstorming session to consider options to address the challenges, including through the United Nations integrated strategy for the Sahel.

    The unspeakable Boko Haram atrocities in northern Nigeria had become a major threat to some Sahel communities and countries. An estimated 100,000 had fled to the Diffa region of Niger and some 10,000 were in Chad and Cameroon. Perhaps more alarming were the recent allegations that Boko Haram was recruiting rebels from among the refugee populations. The interconnections between terrorist and criminal networks in Libya, Mali and northern Nigeria were becoming clearer. Those networks provided the markets for the exchange of weapons, fighters and other forms of illicit trade, she said, adding that an estimated 20,000 firearms form Libya had crossed into the Sahel, and cocaine worth $1.25 billion had been dumped in West Africa through transit through the region. The profits from that illicit trafficking exceeded the security budgets of most countries in the region. Her office intended to work more closely with MINUSMA, the United Nations Support Mission in Haiti (UNSMIL) and other relevant entities in order to enhance regional analysis and programming.

    Calling for particular attention to the thousands of migrants who crossed the Sahel and the Sahara en route to Europe and the Middle East, she said 60 per cent of the human trafficking victims detected in the region were children. Humanitarian indicators across the Sahel remained disquieting, with food insecurity, malnutrition, and displacements on the rise since the last reporting period. With just over $1.1 billion provided by donors against a $1.9 billion appeal, humanitarian interventions remained underfunded. She had convened a meeting of major partners in November, which had resulted in the establishment of an International Contact Group on the Sahel, and had been engaging with Governments and regional organizations in order to enhance regional ownership of the integrated strategy.

    Highlighting achievements in mainstreaming the priorities of the strategy into the existing programming frameworks in the resilience, governance and security pillars, she said several non-United Nations partners continued to implement complementary initiatives. The World Bank had launched a new multi-donor Sahel Adaptive Social Protection Trust Fund and the African Development Bank had approved a $240 million programme to enhance agricultural productivity. The African Union was promoting a regional approach to address security threats.

    Given the deterioration of the political and security situation in the region and the adverse impact on humanitarian and development gains, the need for sustaining Council attention on the Sahel was greater than ever. Despite the enormous strides made by her office in helping put together the necessary structures and coordination mechanism, the situation called for Governments in the region to improve governance and work towards greater regional cooperation and economic integration.

    DAVID PRESSMAN (United States) stated that the countries of the Sahel faced many complex threats, the most visible among them being violent extremism. Weak institutions, cyclical environmental shocks, vast ungoverned spaces, fragile economies and poverty had contributed to suffering and created conditions for transnational criminal organizations to thrive. Commending the Sahel States for their efforts to tackle those problems, he added that the Group of Five for the Sahel was promoting funding initiatives to assist them. Welcoming the integration of national strategies, he said, “Our primary focus should not so much be on process, but on outcomes.” The measure of success was real solutions that addressed security, humanitarian, and governance problems. It was also important that the Sahel States took ownership of solutions. The United States was committed to supporting the wider promotion of regional stability. President Barack Obama had announced the Security Governance initiative to fund security sector reforms in the region.

    GARY FRANCIS QUINLAN (Australia) stated that that the sharp rise in targeted attacks against peacekeepers in Mali, the barbaric terrorist attacks by Boko Haram, and the political crisis in Burkina Faso, among others, had exacerbated the region’s problems, which also hosted more than 1 million refugees. With the large number of actors in the Sahel, coordination was vital, but that was not a substitute for concrete action. Breaking down institutional barriers between the different organizations in the region was crucial, and Australia asked for greater clarity on the division of labour between the Special Envoy’s office and the United Nations Office for West Africa (UNOWA). The participation of the Group of Five was a signal of increasing coherence.

    At the same time, he said, Al‑Qaida was exploiting local conflicts and criminal networks, and small arms smuggling was increasing, especially in Libya. It was essential to establish programmes targeting youth, almost half of whom were unemployed and susceptible to extremism. The key was for all United Nations entities in the region to work together in support of solutions that targeted organized crime and terrorism, while also tackling the root causes of poverty.

    MARK LYALL GRANT (United Kingdom) said it was important to not lose sight of the Sahel region, which had so far avoided a full-blown Ebola crisis. The Sahel region remained on the front lines of terrorism, drug trafficking and instability. The situation in Burkina Faso underscored the need for sustained international effort in early intervention. Success in Mali continued to elude the international community, he said, adding that only a political settlement could resolve the conflict there. The parties in Mali were primarily responsible for the attainment of peace and stability and must redouble their efforts. The Boko Haram threat had spurred greater cooperation in addressing the threat, however the growth of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant/Sham (ISIL) risked further destabilization. While the integrated strategy’s three pillars was the right way ahead, much more could be done, including through regional cooperation.

    SYLVIE LUCAS (Luxembourg) said the briefing underscored the importance of a coordinated and coherent regional approach to the Sahel region. The security situation there had continued to worsen since the last reporting period, she said, adding that the humanitarian situation also had been exacerbated by the increasing violence. No State was in a position to face the threat alone and sustained regional cooperation was critical. The Ministerial Coordination Platform for the Sahel and the Sahel Group of Five were important achievements, she said, while seeking details from the Special Envoy on ways to coordinate the efforts. Accountable institutions capable of providing basic services must be built and the participation of women and civil society must be encouraged.

    KAYODE LARO (Nigeria) said that fighting extremist groups in the Sahel should remain a top priority for the international community. The proliferation of small arms and light weapons contributed to the insecurity, along with porous borders and vast uninhabited spaces. Nigeria was actively engaged in cross-border intelligence and encouraged genuine cooperation between countries of the region. Turning to governance, he said that Governments must address the root causes of extremism, and political leaders must promote inclusion and foster a sense of belonging for all groups. The humanitarian situation remained fragile and human rights organizations, within and outside the United Nations, were bringing relief to millions. But much more needed to be done and the international community must sustain its engagement.

    DINA KAWAR (Jordan) said that the Sahel had become a fertile ground for terrorism and the Al‑Qaida, the Boko Haram, and other terrorist groups had taken advantage of that. Economic vulnerability, climate change, and food insecurity were other overlapping issues. Only regional cooperation would achieve peace and security. The United Nations must “activate preventive diplomacy” and redouble its efforts to enhance coordination. It was also important to note that there were many unique cultural and linguistic identities in the region, and marginalizing them only exacerbated the conflict. Therefore, long-term solutions to the problems of the region called for social participation and consensus. Regional organizations played a key role in implementing measures to achieve stability, and more must be done to support Government efforts at building institutional capacity.

    CARLOS OLGUÍN CIGARROA (Chile) said implementation of the integrated strategy was of great importance and it should consider, not only security, but also development and inclusion, in a way that would help bring the peoples of the region out of poverty. There must be national ownership of solutions, he said, commending the Group of Five and the Ministerial Platform as important initiatives. The democratic system was the best way to bring about fair economic development and peaceful coexistence. Also important was the Council’s work to protect civilians and internally displaced persons. Terrorism, criminal activity and now Ebola threatened the region, which underscored the need for joint efforts by the international and national authorities.

    PETR V. ILIICHEV (Russian Federation) said the briefing underlined the complexity of the challenges gripping the region as well as the need for sustained international attention. Positive action would require a steady fine-tuning of international efforts through a single nucleus. It would be fundamentally flawed to view the region as a ground for competition among donors. The so-called Arab Spring and external intervention in Libya had exacerbated regional tensions, he said, warning against intervention in the internal affairs of countries under any pretext.

    MARÍA CRISTINA PERCEVAL (Argentina) said that the integrated strategy was a significant step towards a comprehensive focus on the Sahel. Recognizing the importance of coherence and coordination, she added that it was vital to not get lost in the conflicts’ individual characteristics. The integrated approach took into account both the humanitarian and security aspects, aiming at eradicating poverty and terrorism. The serious situation in the Sahel was a reminder of the need to tackle the structural causes of conflict; a response focused on security was not enough. Security did not bring about development and progress, and strengthening rule of law was not the only solution to the problem. “We also need to look at ourselves as an international community and ask if we couldn’t make a contribution to sustainable development by changing how the global economic system works,” she said. Global finance should be at the service of development instead of simply producing and reproducing injustice.

    LIU JIEYI (China) cited the region’s multiple challenges, such as the fragile security situation and the spread of terrorism. The Sahel covered a broad area with intertwined conflicts. China believed that issues should be tackled with measures at the national, regional and international levels. Settling regional hotspot issues such as Libya and Mali was a priority. The international community should take targeted measures to improve security while respecting national sovereignty, as that would “reduce heat at the hotspot”. Proactive support for regional and subregional organizations was also crucial. African regional organizations enjoyed a unique advantage in resolving the problems and must be offered more support. The tripartite cooperation between the United Nations, financial institutions, and regional organizations must continue. China attached great importance to its relationship with Africa and would continue to support the concerned countries at the bilateral level.

    EMMANUEL NIBISHAKA (Rwanda) said terrorism and extremism were gaining ground in the Sahel, threatening political stability and undermining the search for peace. The interlinked challenges should be addressed in a coherent manner; that task was daunting but not unattainable. Implementation of the integrated strategy must be nationally owned, and greater coordination and cooperation among international partners and institutions must be encouraged to foster efficiency and to avoid duplication. The Strategy must be reviewed and adapted in line with realities on the ground.

    FRANÇOIS DELATTRE (France) said the stabilization of Mali was crucial to peace and security in the Sahel. He welcomed the involvement of Algeria and the United Nations in recent initiatives to promote a settlement there and urged national authorities to compromise in a spirit of cooperation. France’s Sahel-Sahara strategy focused on key priorities such as social development and cohesion, institution-building and regional security and stability. Its military operation in the region, at the request of the countries there, aimed to combat terrorism at the regional level and to develop security capacities of Governments. The growing partnership among international institutions had been coupled by regional initiatives such as the Ministerial Platform and the Group of Five, and those should be bolstered. The integrated strategy must address all of the region’s challenges and the people must be central to determining their future.

    NIDA JAKUBONĖ (Lithuania) said that the deterioration of the political, security, and humanitarian situation in the Sahel region called for complex, well-coordinated responses and the international community’s consistent engagement. Enhanced intelligence-sharing, reinforcement of existing mechanisms, and regular meetings of the intelligence and security services of the countries of the Sahelo-Saharan region should be considered. The United Nations counter-terrorism machinery must continue to assist the countries. It was regrettable that there was not yet a sustainable peace agreement to the crisis in Mali, while Libya risked becoming another hotbed of radical extremism and terrorism. Lithuania commended the joint efforts of the Organization, the African Union and the Economic Community of West African States in Burkina Faso and would remain vigilant about the political situation there.

    OH JOON (Republic of Korea) said that since the joint high-level visit to the Sahel region led by the Secretary‑General last year, the international community had scaled up political commitments and resources to meet the multitude of threats. However, the region continued to face persistent challenges, for which the integrated strategy was crucial. Building security capabilities and strengthening regional security cooperation was essential and should include more effective border controls and counter-terrorism operations. To ensure lasting peace in the region, it was imperative to tackle chronic problems such as environmental degradation, food insecurity, and youth unemployment. Long-term solutions would build the region’s resiliency. Coherence and coordination between the initiatives was important to ensure that resources were utilized most effectively.

    MAHAMAT ZENE CHERIF (Chad), speaking in his national capacity, said that “the international community has no time to waste”. Welcoming the mobilization of resources, he underscored that youth unemployment led to terrorism and extremism. Chad condemned the terrorist attacks, especially those against MINUSMA soldiers, and remained confident that the integrated strategy would bring about socioeconomic and governance benefits. Chad hoped that with the establishment of peace and security, development would follow. Reiterating the presidential statement of August, he urged strengthened information exchanges with the region’s countries, and asked the Special Envoy for more detail about enhancing cooperation for security.

    Responding to the comments and questions of members, Ms. Sellassie said international organizations had been working in partnership in the Sahel. With the strengthening of the coordination mechanism, she expected cooperation to be further consolidated.

    On the demarcation of responsibilities between the United Nations Office for West Africa and her office, she said part of the Sahel was in West Africa and, therefore, the entities had clearly defined roles.

    In terms of coordination among regional bodies, Mali, as chair of the Ministerial Platform, had invited the Group of Five to its third meeting. The Group, organized to promote national ownership, had become part of the Platform, and the roles of the two entities had been clarified. Her office sought to enhance cooperation among countries through advocacy as well.

    For information media. Not an official record.


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    Source: UN News Service
    Country: Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria

    11 décembre 2014 – Face à la détérioration de la situation politique et sécuritaire au Sahel, les Etats de la région doivent redoubler d'efforts en vue de renforcer la coopération régionale, a déclaré jeudi l'Envoyée spéciale du Secrétaire général pour le Sahel, Hiroute Guebre Sellassie, à l'occasion d'une réunion du Conseil de sécurité des Nations Unies sur la paix et la sécurité dans la région.

    « Dans le domaine de la gouvernance, la région du Sahel continue de souffrir d'un manque de services essentiels, de l'exclusion sociale et d'obstacles au commerce et à l'investissement », a déploré l'Envoyée spéciale, ajoutant que la récente apparition de l'épidémie d'Ebola au Mali risque d'être le choc de trop pour la région.

    « La crise au Burkina Faso et la persistance du conflit au Mali attestent du fait que nos efforts dans le Sahel resteront vains à moins que les pays de la région s'engagent à certaines normes de gouvernance », a-t-elle ajouté.

    S'agissant de la sécurité, selon l'Envoyée spéciale, la région continue de subir les conséquences désastreuses des crises en Libye, au nord du Nigeria, au nord du Mali et en République centrafricaine. « Les allégations persistantes selon lesquelles l'Etat islamique a mis en place des camps d'entraînement en Libye sont particulièrement préoccupantes », a ajouté Mme Guebre Sellassie.

    « Au Mali, malgré les progrès réalisés lors des pourparlers inter-maliens à Alger, la situation sécuritaire dans le nord s'est détériorée, via l'intensification des attaques meurtrières ciblant des casques bleus et les communautés situées le long de la frontière avec le Niger », s'est inquiétée l'Envoyée spéciale, déplorant également « les indicibles atrocités commises dans le nord du Nigeria par Boko Haram », qui recruterait actuellement des rebelles parmi les populations de réfugiés.

    Sur la base de ces différents constats, Mme Guebre Sellassie a énoncé aux membres du Conseil ses priorités pour les mois à venir, à savoir le soutien de la mise en œuvre accélérée des projets tant nationaux que régionaux, en étroite collaboration avec les partenaires régionaux ; le renforcement de la coordination des interventions de la communauté internationale au Sahel, y compris par le biais du Groupe international de contact sur le Sahel ; et la promotion de l'appropriation régionale en renforçant la coopération avec la Communauté économique des Etats de l'Afrique de l'Ouest (CEDEAO), la Communauté économique des Etats de l'Afrique centrale (CEEAC), ainsi que la Plateforme ministérielle de coordination et le G5 Sahel.

    Depuis sa prise de fonction en mai dernier, a insisté l'Envoyée spéciale, « j'ai exhorté les dirigeants et chefs d'Etat du Burkina Faso, du Tchad, du Mali, de la Mauritanie et du Niger à relever les défis qui accablent le Sahel via une approche régionale et leur ai promis le soutien de l'Organisation dans la mise en œuvre de leurs initiatives au Sahel ».


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    Source: International Monetary Fund
    Country: Mali

    Rapport du FMI N 14/337

    Dans le contexte des première et seconde revues de l’accord au titre de la Facilité élargie de crédit, d’une demande de dérogation pour des critères de réalisation et d’une demande de modification de critères de réalisation, les documents ci-après ont été publiés et sont inclus dans le présent dossier :

    • Le Rapport des services du FMI préparé par une équipe des services du FMI et soumis à l’examen du Conseil d’administration le 1er décembre 2014, suite à des discussions qui se sont conclues le 25 septembre 2014 avec les responsables du Mali sur l’évolution et les politiques économiques qui sous-tendent l’accord du FMI au titre de la Facilité élargie de crédit. La rédaction du rapport des services du FMI, qui repose sur les informations disponibles au moment de ces entretiens, a été achevée le 14 novembre 2014.

    • Une Annexe d’information rédigée par le FMI.

    • Une analyse de viabilité de la dette rédigée par le FMI.

    • Un Communiqué de presse qui inclut une déclaration du Président du Conseil d’administration.

    • Une Déclaration de l’administrateur pour le Mali.


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    Source: Deutsche Welle
    Country: Mali

    The city of Timbuktu in northern Mali was a famous commercial center until it was taken over by Islamists in 2012. Almost two years after their withdrawal, the city's economy is still in ruins.

    Fatimatou Elhassan sits on the dusty ground in front of her house on the outskirts of the city of Timbuktu. Next to her, her neighbor is hammering metal, in front of her are several plastic bowls. Among other things, she is selling onions and chili peppers, as well as oil in plastic bags.

    "It's not easy, we are suffering," says the mother of five, pointing to a blue bowl of grain. "Just look at how little sorghum I have here. And even the little I have, I hardly manage to sell. I used to sell six times as much."

    Women forced out of work

    Three years ago, Elhassan still had six employees. Then in April 2012, Islamists took over the city and banned women from working. Elhassan's neighbor was beaten up when the Islamists caught her baking bread in front of the house. Like many of her friends, Elhassan and her family fled. It was only in early 2013, when the Islamists were driven out by Malian and French troops, that they returned to the city. But ever since, Timbuktu's economy has been in ruins. At every street corner, there are bored teenagers, who are either unemployed or only have occasional jobs.

    The only reason Elhassan was able to start doing business again is that, together with a group of other women, she got a loan from the humanitarian organization CARE.

    "While the city was occupied, many inhabitants fled and left all their tools behind," Bokary Diallo, a CARE employee in Timbuktu, told DW. "Those were important assets for them and the jihadists destroyed a lot of them."

    Too scared to trade

    Salem Ould El-Hadje doesn't think Timbuktu is headed for an economic upturn. The retired history professor has written several books about the city. He particularly focused on the golden age when Timbuktu was a significant trading post for salt, ivory and slaves at the edge of the Sahara. Nowadays, hardly a trader dares enter the city and many of the shops at the market remain closed.

    "There were a lot of robbers who terrorized people on the routes to Mauretania, Algeria and to the town of Mopti," says El-Hadje. "That is why traders don't come to the city anymore." According to El-Hadje, the most important businessmen and moneylenders were Arabs. "Then many of them were suddenly accused of being jihadists and became afraid to come back."

    Kidnappings, hold-ups and robbers

    Tourists are also staying away, even though Timbuktu is a World Heritage Site with ancient mosques and libraries. The risk of kidnapping and robberies is high. The government in Bamako is a two-day trip away from Timbuktu and is too weak to control the desert area in the north. And the UN peacekeeping mission MINUSMA only concentrates on larger cities - Timbuktu doesn't even have paved roads.

    But Fatimatou Elhassan is optimistic about her business. The Islamists are gone, and she thinks that is the main thing. Even if the neighbors hardly have the money to buy her wares: the situation will improve slowly but surely, she hopes.

    Author Adrian Kriesch / ecs


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Gambia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria


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    Source: World Food Programme, Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone

    L'ESSENTIEL

    • Les prévisions régionales de production agricole sont en hausse par rapport à la moyenne des cinq dernières années. Ce niveau de production cache des disparités d’un pays à l’autre.

    • Les prix des céréales sèches sont supérieurs aux moyennes quinquennales dans les zones de déficits agricoles et de conflit.

    • Selon le Cadre Harmonisé, 14 530 000 personnes sont en insécurité alimentaire (octobre – décembre 2014).

    • Malgré le début des récoltes, les ménages continuent d’avoir recours à des stratégies d’adaptation négatives dans les zones fortement affectées par la maladie à virus Ebola (MVE).


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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: Burkina Faso

    P4P in Burkina Faso

    In Burkina Faso, P4P aims to increase the capacity of farmers’ organizations (FOs) to invest in crop production and engage in collective sales, helping them become independent, professional actors in the agricultural value chain. Working closely with the government’s Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security (MASA), P4P acts as a catalyst for collaboration among partners across the value chain, facilitating FO access to WFP and other markets. In 2015 and beyond, P4P in Burkina Faso will continue to increase WFP purchases from smallholder farmers, promote and empower women farmers and support the government’s creation of a national programme similar to P4P.


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    Source: UN Children's Fund
    Country: Cameroon, Central African Republic, Nigeria

    Highlights

    UNICEF continues to be engaged in providing humanitarian response in four regions of Cameroon – in the Far North, North, Adamawa and East.

    NIGERIAN REFUGEES– The number of targeted kidnappings and armed attacks by Boko Haram has reduced since October. Among the 24,182 Nigerian refugees who arrived in Northern Cameroon this year, an estimated 18,667 are in Minawao refugee camp.

    CAR REFUGEES: Among the 241,096 refugees officially registered 134,611 new refugees have come in since December 2013. 62,284 people are currently in 8 refugee sites in East and Adamawa regions. 41,666 children under 17 years of age residing in camps are being supported through nutrition, health (polio, HIV, measles, malaria), WASH, education and protection interventions.

    SAHEL NUTRITION RESPONSE: 43,424 children with SAM have been admitted for therapeutic care to date through UNICEF and partners. Preliminary results of the 2014 nationwide survey using SMART methods indicate that Far North, North and Adamawa have a global acute malnutrition prevalence (GAM) of 9.0%, 6.7% and 5.2% respectively. The Far North region has a prevalence of severe acute malnutrition (SAM) at the emergency threshold of 2.0%.

    POLIO RESURGENCE: 10 rounds of mass polio immunization have been implemented in 2014. The latest data from the last round (October 30th to November 2nd) show a total coverage of 1,127,918 children under 10 years in East and Adamawa including 239,132 refugees.

    CHOLERA AND EBOLA RESPONSE: C4D pools of 3 social mobilizers each have been established in East and Adamawa region in and outside of the refugee camps, which has helped prevent cholera spreading in camps. Support to the Government in planning and responding to these health emergencies continues.


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    Source: African Union, International Peace Institute
    Country: Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mali, Rwanda, South Sudan, World

    Mireille Affa'a Mindzie, George Mukundi Wachira, and Lucy Dunderdale

    The “Africa rising” narrative has gained traction in recent years. But who, exactly, is rising? While statistics point to a continent whose fortunes have improved, many African citizens remain at the margins of socioeconomic development. And as recent citizen uprisings on the continent demonstrate, growth without effective democratic governance cannot ensure peace and stability.

    This report argues that Africa will only live up to the “rising” narrative if it can strengthen its systems of governance, promote inclusive development, and embed a culture of democracy and peace. It examines the obstacles to effective governance in challenging environments—from identity crises to poor natural resource management—and presents five country case studies that illustrate their effects.

    Exploring African responses to these challenges, the authors outline progress and setbacks in developing frameworks for effective governance and strengthening institutions at regional, national, and local levels. They offer a number of recommendations for the African Union, its member states, and others to enhance democracy, bridge the divide between governance standards and performance, and promote effective governance from the ground up.

    Effective Governance in Challenging Environments is a joint undertaking by the African Union and the International Peace Institute.

    The launch of this publication will be webcast at 1:15 pm on December 12, 2014.


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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Mali

    12/12/2014 - 18:36 GMT

    Tunisian Foreign Minister Mongi Hamdi has been appointed to head the UN peace mission in Mali, where 31 peacekeepers have been killed in attacks since it deployed 18 months ago.

    Hamdi, 55, replaces Dutch diplomat Albert Koenders who led the 9,300-strong MINUSMA force since last year, the UN announced on Friday.

    Hamdi had been foreign minister since January and has held various positions within the UN system over the past 25 years.

    His appointment comes as the United Nations is looking to strengthen its peacekeeping mission in Mali following a string of brazen attacks in the north of the country, where Islamist groups are seeking to regain a foothold.

    Northern Mali was occupied by Islamist groups in April 2012, who imposed a brutal rule before being driven out by French troops nine months later.

    cml/sdo/jm


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