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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Niger

    Niamey, Niger | AFP | jeudi 17/12/2015 - 21:43 GMT

    Le président nigérien Mahamadou Issoufou a affirmé qu'une tentative de coup d'Etat a été déjoué au Niger, justifiant une vague d'arrestations de militaires à travers le pays, au cours d'une allocution à la télévision nationale jeudi soir.

    "Le gouvernement vient de déjouer une tentative malheureuse de déstabilisation des institutions", a déclaré M. Issoufou dans un message traditionnel diffusé à la veille des cérémonies de l'indépendance.

    Les réseaux sociaux et la presse locale avaient évoqué lundi des arrestations de militaires, informations qui n'avaient pas été pas jusqu'à présent confirmées par les autorités.

    Aucun représentant de l'opposition n'était joignable dans l'immédiat.

    "L'objectif de ces individus animés par je ne sais quelle motivation était de renverser les institutions démocratiquement élues en utilisant les moyens mis à leur disposition par le peuple pour assurer sa sécurité", a ajouté M. Issoufou.

    Une élection présidentielle est prévue le 21 février 2016. M. Issoufou, qui a été élu en 2011, brigue un second mandat lors de ce scrutin.

    "Alors que toutes les institutions, qui en ont la charge préparent activement les élections afin que le peuple nigérien puisse faire son arbitrage dans la transparence, une poignée d'individus qui ont la tête dans les années 1960 ont décidé de substituer leur propre arbitrage à celui du peuple souverain", a poursuivi le président.

    Ces derniers "envisageaient notamment d'utiliser la puissance de feu des moyens aériens", a-t-il ajouté.

    "Les principaux auteurs de cette folle aventure ont pu être tous identifiés et arrêtés à l'exception d'un seul en fuite. La situation est calme et sous contrôle, l’enquête en cours permettra d'identifier les autres acteurs et complices éventuels de ce funeste complot contre la sûreté de l'Etat", a-t-il conclu.

    Parmi les personnes arrêtées selon la presse et les réseaux sociaux, figurent le général d'aviation Souleymane Salou, 62 ans, ancien chef d'état-major des armées sous le régime militaire du Général Djibo Salou (2010) auquel M. Issoufou avait succédé au pouvoir, le lieutenant-colonel Idi Abdou Dan Haoua, commandant de la Base aérienne de Niamey ou le Commandant Naré Maidoka, chef du 1er Bataillon d’Artillerie de Tillabéri, une ville située à une centaine de km à l'ouest du pays et proche de la frontière avec le Mali.

    En 2011, le président Issoufou avait déjà annoncé dans un message a la nation avoir déjoué un putsch contre son régime. Selon les autorités, dix militaires dont des officiers avaient alors été arrêtés pour "tentative de renversement du régime" et "tentative d’assassinat du chef de l'Etat".

    bh-pgf-eak/sba

    © 1994-2015 Agence France-Presse


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    Source: Agency for Technical Cooperation and Development
    Country: Cameroon, Chad, Niger, Nigeria

    Lake Chad used to cover an area of 25,000 km2. The lake progressively dried-up, and covers nowadays an area of less than 2,500 km2. The disaster had been previously announced, hence the Lake Chad Basin Commission, gathering the lake’s neighboring countries (Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria), has been established in 1964 to define a sustainable and cooperative water management plan. With waters receding, nowadays only Cameroon and Chad still count a lake’s shore among their borders. If water continues to recede, Lake Chad could disappear in about twenty years from now, according to NASA climate forecasts.

    Climate change is already generating social tensions, conflicts and migrations

    The receding of waters exacerbates difficulties in an area already at risk, and with one of the world’s lowest human development indexes. Coupled with demographic pressures, human activities and mismanagement of the remaining water resources, climate change leads to a massive environmental disaster.

    This has a harsh impact on the million people whose means of livelihood heavily depends on Lake Chad. It also strongly threatens peace and security in the region, and the resulting poverty and unemployment is pushing people to leave.

    Increased poverty through the receding of Lake Chad

    With the receding of Lake Chad, millions of people lost all their means of livelihood. Most of them, lacking of basic education and diversified skills, are unable to make a living out of something else than agriculture, livestock and fisheries. However, those activities are no longer or hardly possible due to the receding of Lake Chad. Moreover, there are no significant industries in the area, and not enough paying jobs for those who received an education. In a region affected by ecological threats, poverty can only worsen: 5 million people need food assistance and 200,000 children under 5 are suffering from severe acute malnutrition.

    The receding of waters and the resulting deforestation and desertification strongly affected pastures of nomadic pastors and shepherds, who were forced to move to other areas to graze their livestock. This exacerbates conflicts with local landowners.

    ACTED recently carried out a study in Niger which showed that due to the drying of water points, the modification of transhumance corridors and insecurity, the herds usually grazing in the northern part of the region move towards Nigeria, whereas those grazing in the South move to the North. This creates unusual concentrations of livestock in areas around Lake Chad, and increases the pressure for access to water points and pastures, which is weak even in normal conditions.

    The impacts of climate change cause widespread displacements of populations

    Violence contributes significantly to causing widespread displacements in the Lake Chad area. Since July 2015, more than 71,000 people fled Nigeria and North Cameroon towards the lake’s shores. As a consequence of the current extremely low water levels, violence increases significantly in the villages located on the lake’s shores, so that the populations are progressively leaving them. On the beginning of November, about 900 households fled to inland regions in Niger. They urgently need shelters, food, access to water and access to sanitation and health structures.

    A total of 2,5 million people are displaced in this area of the world. Their settlement on the Lake Chad’s shores exacerbates the fight for land and natural resources between the communities.

    In this context, ACTED implements projects to help displaced populations, in particular by managing host sites for refugees and displaced people in South Niger and by reinforcing access to health care facilities in the camps and host communities, with the support of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

    Due to the lack of opportunities, massive waves of migrants move from the Lake Chad basin towards neighboring countries or even further, seeking for new opportunities.

    ACTED teams in Niger and Chad focus their efforts on strengthening food security

    ACTED supports refugees and displaced populations in the lake area in Chad and Niger by providing food distributions, with the support of the World Food Programme (WFP). ACTED also provides fortified flours for pregnant women and children under 2, in order to reinforce food and nutritional status of the most vulnerable people, in a context of crises, resources scarcity and pressures for access to those resources.

    Food insecurity and pastures scarcity influenced people displacements since 2013. ACTED fosters income-generating activities as an alternative to fisheries, farming and pastoralism for refugees and displaced populations.

    Recent events in this area show how climate change is already leading to social tensions, conflicts and migrations. Without assuming an urgent and decisive action, the chances of improvement of the Lake Chad’s situation and the life conditions of 30 million people depending on it for survival are weak


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

    KEY POINTS

    • Good agro-pastoral production is expected in West Africa and the Sahel.

    • Some localized fodder deficits in the pastoral zone of Niger, Mali, Mauritania, Senegal and Chad may lead to an early pastoral lean period.

    • Results of the Cadre Harmonisé (CH) indicate that 7.9 million people are in crisis in the current period (October-December 2015) and 10.5 million people during the lean period (June-August 2016) in 17 countries in the region: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cap Vert, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.

    The increase in grain production by 13 percent in the Sahel and 12 percent across the region over the five-year average currently allows for a good supply in most markets in the region.

    The pastoral situation is satisfactory with good fodder availability, however, there is a localized fodder deficit north of the Sahel (Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal and Chad), and this area merits monitoring.

    Food and nutrition insecurity affect 7.9 million people in this time of harvest and 10.5 million people are estimated to be food and nutrition insecurity in the 2016 lean period if no adequate response is made.

    In Chad, the low levels of production and insecurity could lead to a slump in food availability until June 2016 for vulnerable households.


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    Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid Office
    Country: El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, World

    Key messages

    • Disasters caused by natural hazards such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, floods, hurricanes, landslides and droughts frequently impact Central America and Mexico. The European Commission has provided humanitarian aid such as temporary shelter, food assistance, clean water and proper sanitation in all the major crises that have impacted the region in the past 20 years.

    • Vulnerability to disasters is extremely high due to unplanned urbanisation, climate change, widespread poverty and high levels of violence. Disaster Risk Reduction* (DRR) is therefore a priority in order to mitigate these challenges.

    • About one third of the assistance has been channeled to increase the resilience* of vulnerable communities and their institutions, by identifying risks and taking measures to reduce them to be better prepared to respond to natural hazards.

    • In the framework of the EU Children of Peace initiative, the Commission is one of the few donors addressing the specific humanitarian consequences for children of high levels of violence in Mexico and the Northern Triangle of Central America (El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala).

    Read the full Factsheet here.


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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: Afghanistan, Angola, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Brazil, Chad, China, Djibouti, Ecuador, El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Myanmar, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, Vanuatu, Viet Nam, World, Zambia, Zimbabwe

    Overview

    The on-going El Nino event, officially declared in March, is now at its peak intensity. The event will become one the strongest if not the strongest ever recorded. From early 2016 it should start unwinding back to neutral conditions, that may be reached in the second quarter of 2016. The event has influenced most growing seasons of the northern hemisphere, and is now influencing those of southern Africa, Indonesia and Pacific and South America from late 2015 to early 2016. The impacts are wide ranging and generally negative in countries facing food insecurity.

    Regional Highlights

    • Central America: The region experienced widespread drought during the Primera season and was followed by drier than average conditions at the early stages of the second season (Postrera). The Postrera season (major bean production) enjoyed a measure of recovery and is likely to end with near average harvests improving the situation. Most affected countries are Haiti, Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua.
    • West Africa: In the Sahel, a close to full recovery is expected, after favourable rainfall since mid July; no major impacts are expected. The rainfall season has come to an end with only localized concerns in Chad and southern Ghana showing seasonal deficits of some significance.
    • East Africa: Ethiopia’s Belg and Meher growing seasons were both affected by severe rainfall deficits leading to the worst drought in 50 years. The country is now dealing with a major drought related emergency. Sudan also affected by poor growing season as well as Eritrea and Djibouti. Sudan is facing a rainfed production shortfall and very poor conditions for pastoralists in East and centre. Poor season in Karamoja and some localized impacts in South Sudan, though late season rains helped pastoralists.​
    • Indian subcontinent and South Asia and Pacific: The season has been favourable in Pakistan and Afghanistan, but India and most of SE Asia countries faced seasonal rainfall deficits. Drier than average conditions have affected the Philippines, Indonesia and Pacific islands, throughout 2015 which should last until early 2016, with likely negative impacts on national crop production. PNG is facing the worst drought on record.​
    • Horn of Africa: Above average rainfall for the region in accordance with typical El Nino impacts led to flooding in Somalia, flash floods and landslides in Kenya. No large scale flooding is now expected, but Kenya should face continued localized flashfloods and landslides. With the exception of NE Kenya, the enhanced rainfall has led to good vegetation development in arid and semi-arid areas.
    • Southern Africa: There have been severe rainfall deficits in the early stages of the season, with delays in the start of the season and poor vegetation status. Drier than average conditions may affect the growing season over most of the region. This may turn into maize production shortfalls in South Africa, Zimbabwe and Malawi, with a risk of high impact on vulnerable populations. There is still time for recovery given that it is still early in the season, but close monitoring is required.
    • South America: Drier than average in northern areas of continent, wetter than average in southern Brazil, Paraguay and along coasts of Peru and Ecuador are anticipated for the start of the 2016 . Possible drought in NE Brazil and dryness in Bolivia as well as enhanced risk of flooding and landslides in Paraguay, Peru and Ecuador.

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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Mali

    Bamako, Mali | AFP | vendredi 18/12/2015 - 10:24 GMT |

    Trois personnes dont un journaliste d'une radio chrétienne ont été tuées dans la nuit de jeudi à vendredi par un homme armé à Tombouctou (nord-ouest du Mali), a-t-on appris vendredi auprès d'un élu local, d'un haut responsable administratif et d'une source de sécurité.

    "Trois personnes dont un animateur de +Tahanite+, la radio chrétienne de Tombouctou, étaient devant (cette radio) jeudi nuit quand un homme armé est venu les assassiner par balle avant de s'enfuir", a déclaré à l'AFP un responsable de la mairie de Tombouctou.

    Cet homme aurait "froidement abattu les trois personnes, parmi lesquelles on compte au moins un catholique et au moins un animateur de la radio. Les terroristes qui ne veulent pas entendre parler d'autre religion que (celle) musulmane sont pour moi les auteurs de ce crime", a déclaré à l'AFP un haut responsable du gouvernorat de Tombouctou.

    "C'est un coup des jihadistes qui veulent diviser les musulmans et les catholiques, mais ils n'y arriveront jamais", a-t-il ajouté.

    L'information a été confirmée par une source de sécurité malienne à Tombouctou qui a parlé d'"un lâche assassinat perpétré par ceux qui veulent créer la guerre des religions".

    Le journaliste assassiné, Amar Oumar dit Joel, était animateur et directeur des programmes de la radio. Il a été tué avec deux de ses amis qui étaient avec lui devant la station, selon les mêmes sources.

    Communément appelée "la radio chrétienne de Tombouctou", la chaîne privée locale "Tahanite" (pitié en langue locale tamasheq), est située dans le sud-est de la ville.

    Elle diffuse des émissions religieuses axées sur la Bible et est connue pour ses liens "très étroits" avec la mission évangélique chrétienne locale.

    En 2012, lors de l'occupation de la ville de Tombouctou par les jihadistes, la radio n'avait plus été autorisée à réaliser et diffuser d'émissions évoquant la Bible.

    Le nord du Mali était tombé en mars-avril 2012 sous la coupe de groupes jihadistes liés à Al-Qaïda après la déroute de l'armée face à la rébellion à dominante touareg, d'abord alliée à ces groupes qui l'ont ensuite évincée.

    Les groupes islamistes extrémistes ont été dispersés et en ont été en grande partie chassés à la suite du lancement de l'opération militaire internationale contre eux, qui se poursuit actuellement. Mais des zones entières échappent encore au contrôle des forces maliennes et étrangères.

    sd/mrb/fra

    © 1994-2015 Agence France-Presse


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    Source: Government of Nigeria
    Country: Nigeria

    Yesterday exactly 441 ‪IDPs‬ left NYSC Damare Camp for their respective local governments; Bama/banki and Gamboru Ngala. Before their departure proper screening was done by the security agencies and they were given provisions by cordinating staff of ‪NEMA‬. They were so happy and ecstatic for this day to have come to pass.


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    Source: Government of Nigeria
    Country: Cameroon, Nigeria

    The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has received one thousand one hundred and eighty seven (1,187) Nigerian returnees comprising of men, women and children from the Republic of Cameroon between Monday 14th to Wednesday 16th December, 2015 at the Fufore IDP camp in Adamawa state.

    The returnees were thoroughly screened and profiled by security agents before being registered by NEMA and Red Cross officials who were on ground to receive them.

    After a successful registration, the returnees were provided with food and basic needs including mattresses, buckets, plates, cups, mosquito nets, and soap, etc.
    About fifteen thousand Nigerians are expected to arrive the Nigerian border with Cameroon through Mubi in the next few weeks.
    So far over eighteen thousand, six hundred (18,600) Nigerians have been returned and received by NEMA and other relevant stakeholders.
    It would be recalled that thousands of Nigerian citizens that have earlier fled to the Cameroon as a result of Boko Haram insurgency have been returning home since August, 2015 as a result of improvement in the security situation in the North east and increasing concerns on by the cameroonian authorities on their prolonged stay in the country.


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    Source: UN Children's Fund
    Country: Mali

    BAMAKO / GENÈVE / NEW YORK, le 18 Décembre 2015 - Plus de 380 000 enfants âgés de 7 à 15 ans ne sont pas scolarisés dans les régions d'insécurité au Nord du Mali, trois mois après la rentrée scolaire et dans un contexte sécuritaire qui a empiré ces quatre dernières années dans cette partie du pays, a déclaré l'UNICEF aujourd'hui.

    « Les enfants au Nord ont subi l'impact du conflit, la pauvreté et les privations, » a déclaré Fran Equiza, Représentant de l'UNICEF au Mali. « L'éducation est l’espoir d'un avenir meilleur. »

    Environ 1 école sur 6 est fermée dans les zones touchées par le conflit, ce qui représente plus de 280 écoles. Pour la majorité de ces écoles, elles restent fermées pour la troisième année consécutive, après avoir été endommagées, détruites, pillées ou occupées par des groupes armés. A ce jour, 79% des écoles sont toujours fermées à Kidal. Le chemin de l'école est toujours dangereux, et la crainte des mines non explosées et autres restes explosifs de guerre poussent les parents à empêcher leurs enfants d’aller à l’école.

    La violence a également conduit à une pénurie d'enseignants. Près de 600 enseignants ont fui les zones de conflit ou ne se présentent plus au travail à cause de l'insécurité.

    L'UNICEF lance la campagne d’éducation « Chaque Enfant Compte » qui contribue à relancer l'éducation dans les régions de Gao, Kidal, Mopti, Ségou et Tombouctou pendant deux ans. Les activités de cette initiative portent sur:

    La formation et mise à disposition de matériel d'apprentissage pour 2 000 enseignants; La mise à disposition de kits individuels et scolaires pour 100 000 enfants; Des activités pour la consolidation de la paix pour 100 000 enfants et 10 000 livrets sur l'éducation à la paix et la non-discrimination pour les élèves et leurs communautés. La campagne comprend des programme d’apprentissage accéléré et alternatif, y compris par la radio, pour permettre aux enfants hors de l'école de réintégrer le système éducatif, mais aussi des activités de réhabilitation légère des écoles et d’éducation sur les dangers des restes explosifs de guerre.

    Environ 1 enfant sur 5 est touché par la crise au Mali, ce qui représente près de 1,4 million d'enfants. On estime à près de 62 000 le nombre de déplacés internes et 139 000 le nombre de réfugiés dans les pays voisins.

    Malgré l’envergure des besoins, les interventions de l'UNICEF dans le pays sont limitées par un financement insuffisant. L'agence a reçu moins d'un tiers des 37 millions de $ nécessaires pour l’éducation mais aussi la protection de l’enfant, la santé, la nutrition et les programmes d'eau, hygiène et assainissement dans les écoles.

    ###

    Matériel multimédia (photos et séquences vidéos) disponible: http://uni.cf/1IH5NDX

    A propos de l’UNICEF L'UNICEF fait la promotion des droits et du bien -être de tous les enfants. Ensemble, avec nos partenaires, nous travaillons dans 190 pays et territoires pour traduire cet engagement en actions concrètes, en portant une attention particulière aux enfants exclus et les plus vulnérables, au profit de tous les enfants partout dans le monde. Pour plus d'informations sur le travail de l'UNICEF, consultez: www.unicef.org/french

    Suivez-nous sur Twitter et Facebook.

    Pour plus d’informations:
    Ismail Maiga, UNICEF Mali, +223 76 40 91 01, imaiga@unicef.org
    Cindy Cao, UNICEF Mali, +223 78 58 24 35, ccao@unicef.org
    Najwa Mekki, UNICEF New York, +1917 209 1804, nmekki@unicef.org


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

    L’instabilité au nord-est du Nigéria et les attaques de Boko Haram menées à Diffa depuis février 2015, ont entrainé le déplacement de dizaines de milliers de personnes du Nigéria vers le Niger et à l’intérieur même de la dite région. La majorité de ces déplacés ont quitté leurs localités d’origine en abandonnant leurs moyens de subsistance et se retrouvent dans une situation de vulnérabilité. La présence des personnes déplacées accentuent la vulnérabilité des communautés hôtes, elles-mêmes confrontées à des défis tels que l’insécurité alimentaire, la malnutrition et l’accès limité aux services sociaux de base.


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


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


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

    Au total, 1,5 million de personnes, soit 75% de la population dans le besoin, sont ciblées par ce PRH. Comparé à 2015, on note une baisse de 40% de la cible s’expliquant par la diminution des personnes dans le besoin et l’engagement de plus en plus croissant du Gouvernement dans la réponse.

    Les organisations humanitaires estiment à 316 millions de dollars les fonds requis pour l’assistance humanitaire et l’appui à la résilience des communautés vulnérables. Si en 2015, près de 70% des besoins financiers étaient affectés à des activités liées aux crises chroniques, en 2016, 50% des besoins financiers seront orientés sur la région de Diffa où sévit une crise des plus aiguës.


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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Nigeria

    Abuja, Nigeria | AFP | Friday 12/18/2015 - 18:53 GMT

    Nigerian officials warned Friday that Boko Haram jihadists were planning a Chibok-style mass abduction of students in the weeks before President Muhammadu Buhari's deadline to eradicate the group expires.

    Warning that foreigners are also at risk, the country's minister of information and culture Lai Mohammed said Boko Haram was planning to stage a similar attack to the 2014 kidnapping of 276 girls from the northeastern town of Chibok.

    "The kidnap of the Chibok girls in 2014, which attracted global attention to the terrorist group, is what it is now trying to repeat," said Mohammed in a statement, urging schools to "upgrade security."

    Buhari has vowed to stamp out the bloody Boko Haram insurgency that has claimed tens of thousands of lives by the end of the year.

    As the jihadist group is squeezed out of key territory, it has relied increasingly on deadly bomb attacks to wage war for a hardline Islamist state.

    But while Boko Haram's capacity to attack has been reduced, sporadic deadly raids still plague towns and villages in the northeast of Nigeria, as well as in northern Cameroon, southeastern Niger and on the Chadian side of Lake Chad, where all four countries meet.

    ola-sf/cb

    © 1994-2015 Agence France-Presse


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  • 12/18/15--11:53: World: 2015 Year In Review
  • Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Cameroon, Chad, Iraq, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine, Vanuatu, World, Yemen

    In 2015 OCHA coordinated humanitarian aid to help support 80 million people in 37 countries. Our teams on the ground worked with affected people, Governments, UN agencies and NGOs. This 2015 Year in Review highlights some of OCHA’s work to serve people in need.

    2015 Year in Review


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    Source: UN Children's Fund
    Country: Mali

    New UNICEF initiative helps children resume their learning

    BAMAKO, Mali/GENEVA/NEW YORK, 18 December 2015– More than 380,000 children aged 7 to 15 remain out of school in insecure regions in northern Mali, three months into the new school year and almost four years since the security situation worsened in that part of the country, UNICEF said today.

    “Children in northern Mali know too well the impact of conflict, poverty and deprivation,” said Fran Equiza, UNICEF Representative in Mali. “Education is their best hope for the future.”

    Over 280 schools, or 1 in 6, in the conflict-affected areas in northern Mali are closed, many of them for the third year in a row, after they were damaged, destroyed, looted or occupied by the warring parties. In Kidal, one of the worst hit areas, 79 per cent of schools remain closed. The journey to and from school remains unsafe, and fear of unexploded mines and other remnants of war have forced parents to keep their children away from the classrooms.

    Violence has also led to a shortage of teachers. Nearly 600 teachers have fled the conflict areas or are no longer reporting to work because of insecurity.

    UNICEF is helping to give children back their right to education, through a two-year campaign focusing on the areas of Gao, Kidal, Mopti, Segou and Timbuktu. The campaign, ‘Every Child Counts’, provides:
    - Training opportunities and learning materials for 2,000 teachers;
    - Individual kits for students and school kits to reach 100,000 children;
    - Peacebuilding activities for 100,000 children and 10,000 booklets promoting peace and non-discrimination for students and their communities.

    The campaign will also provide alternative and accelerated learning programmes, including via radio lessons, for out-of-school children. Schools will be rehabilitated and children will be educated about the danger of unexploded ordnance.

    Up to 1.4 million children – or more than 1 in 6 – are affected by the crisis in Mali. Nearly 62,000 people are internally displaced and another 139,000 have sought refuge in neighbouring countries.

    Despite the immense needs, UNICEF’s programmes in the country are hindered by constrained access and limited funding. The children’s agency has received less than a third of the $37 million it needs for its education, protection, health, nutrition and water, sanitation and hygiene programmes.

    “The dream of building a better future for Mali’s children depends on action now,” Equiza said. “Better humanitarian access and more resources can’t come soon enough for those who have been deprived for so long. Education is their best hope for the future.”

    ###

    Multimedia material is available at: http://uni.cf/1IH5NDX

    About UNICEF
    UNICEF promotes the rights and well-being of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. For more information about UNICEF and its work, visit: www.unicef.org

    Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

    For further information contact:
    Tim Irwin, UNICEF Regional Office in Dakar, + 221 77 52 91 294, tjirwin@unicef.org
    Cindy Cao, UNICEF Mali, +223 78 58 24 35, ccao@unicef.org,
    Najwa Mekki, UNICEF New York, +1917 209 1804, nmekki@unicef.org


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    Source: UN Children's Fund
    Country: Mali

    By Naoko Imoto

    After losing both parents to conflict and leaving school when classes were suspended, a girl in northern Mali gets a chance to restart her education through a UNICEF-supported accelerated learning programme.

    GAO, Mali, 14 December 2015 – Adaoula was 8 years old when a bomb hit her home in the town of Gao in northern Mali. She lost both her parents in the explosion, and for a long time after, Adaoula was unable to speak.

    Her school was closed in 2012, when conflict in northern Mali between separatist groups and the Government displaced tens of thousands of people and worsened conditions for communities already vulnerable to food insecurity, malnutrition, epidemics, drought and chronic poverty.

    When schools reopened, Adaoula could not go back, because her grandmother, who had taken the young girl in, didn’t have enough money to pay the school fees. Instead, Adaoula had to help with house chores.

    “Through all this time, I just wanted to go to school,” Adaoula says with a shy smile.

    Exciting news

    A couple months ago, the village chief came to visit her grandmother and told her there would be an accelerated learning course and that Adaoula could attend for nine months, allowing her to continue her studies. Then she would be able to return to school the following year.

    She couldn’t have been more excited.

    Adaoula, now 11, always sits at the back of the class. “She doesn’t talk much, but I can tell that she’s so happy to be in school,” her teacher says. “I knew her parents. I’ll make sure that she does well in the class. She will – she’s very smart.”

    A second chance

    Adaoula is among 4,500 out-of-school children in Mali in areas affected by conflict who joined the accelerated learning programme, which is part of UNICEF’s “Every Child Counts” campaign.

    Under the programme, children 8 to 12 years old have been given another chance to go to school.

    Arakietou, 10, is Adaoula’s classmate and is among 12 children who travel to school by pirogue on the Niger River.

    “She has been sick for several years, so I couldn’t sent her to school,” her mother says. “Plus, I was too scared to send her by river because of insecurity.”

    Going back to school means many things for children like Adaoula and Arakietou: a renewed sense of stability, a safe environment, and a chance for a brighter future. In many ways, it is a new world for them, and one that every child deserves.


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    Source: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH
    Country: Philippines

    The publication describes how a multi hazard suitability map for residential buildings was produced by using quantitative data (probability, severity) considering seven hazards (storm surge, tsunami, inland floods, storm, earthquake, landslide, ground rupture) and how this map may be applied for land use planning and related purposes.

    The production of the map included a survey of available hazard and vulnerability related information and data. The most reliable and appropriate sources were chosen and processed in a geographic information system (GIS). The map reveals big differences in the risk level of different areas. The flat coastal areas in the east of the island are more exposed to severe coastal hazards (storm surge and tsunami) than other coasts and with this they are the most dangerous spots in Leyte. Contributing to this is also the earthquake and the storm hazard. Both are more severe in the north east than the south west of the island. Some areas are facing relatively low risk levels.


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    Source: Agence France-Presse
    Country: Nigeria

    Saturday 12/19/2015 - 02:58 GMT

    by David ESNAULT

    Nigeria, which is still battling Boko Haram militants, now risks unleashing a new Islamist threat after violent clashes between the army and a radical Shiite group, experts say.

    Though no official death toll was released, at least a dozen members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) were killed in confrontations with the army during a religious procession last week in the northern city of Zaria. 

    IMN leader Ibrahim Zakzaky was seriously wounded and arrested by the army while his number two was killed during the clashes. The military was forced to put out a denial after rumours spread that Zakzaky's wife died in custody.

    The violence mirrors the bloody beginning of the Boko Haram insurrection in 2009, when the former leader of the Sunni militant group was executed in police custody and the sect took up arms against the Nigerian government.

    Nigeria's highest Muslim authority, the Sultan of Sokoto, on Monday urged the authorities to show "restraint".

    "Don't create a new Boko Haram," warned Alhaji Muhammad Sa'ad Abubakarr in a statement.

    "The past, with cataclysmic consequences that Nigeria is yet to recover from, should not be allowed to repeat itself," he added.

    Battling Boko Haram is a priority for Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari, who has vowed to end the insurgency that has claimed 17,000 lives.

    Boko Haram has shifted its strategy from raiding villages to relying on deadly bomb attacks in its quest to overthrow the government and create a hardline Islamist state in the northeast of the west African nation of some 170 million people.

    'Risk of escalation'

    Zakzaky, who founded IMN in the 1980s, has been monitored by Nigerian security forces for years on suspicion that he is trying to create an independent Shiite state.

    As a defiant preacher in the late 1970s, he described the country as being run by thieves.

    "The IMN attracts impoverished Muslim youths by preaching defiance of Nigeria's secular authorities and offering a social infrastructure that is not provided by the state," said Malte Liewerscheidt, Africa analyst at Verisk Maplecroft, a research and investment firm. 

    "Like other Shiite movements around the world, the IMN enjoys political and financial support from the Shia regime in Iran," Liewerscheidt said.

    The army says the hardline rhetoric boiled over into violence in Zaria, with the Shiite worshippers allegedly attacking the convoy of army chief Yusuf Buratai -- a claim denied by IMN.

    Soldiers attacked and destroyed a mosque, while Zakzaky was severely injured and his house was destroyed.

    The total toll of the clashes, which continued between soldiers and hundreds of Shiite faithful for two days, is unknown, but it is likely to amount to dozens of deaths, according to testimony gathered by AFP.

    "Whilst the final death toll is unclear, there is no doubt there has been a substantial loss of life at the hands of the military," said M.K. Ibrahim, director of Amnesty International in Nigeria, who called for a "impartial investigation" into the Zaria events.

    "Since Nigeria's security forces are ill-equipped and trained to deal with riot control, the escalation of a local confrontation with the IMN was just a matter of time," said Liewescheidt. 

    "The risk of escalation will be compounded if the military response spirals out of control and if due process is ignored in the handling of Zakzaky and his followers who are in custody."

    However, not everyone sees IMN as a nascent insurgency.

    "Nigeria's small Shiite minority is generally well integrated within Nigerian society," said Roddy Barclay, analyst at strategy firm Africa Practise. 

    "It is important to note that Zakzaky's Shiite followers would find little affinity with Boko Haram’s ultraconservative Sunni fighters," he said. "However, the personal cult around Sheikh Zakzaky has been a source of tension."

    "They are small in numbers and somewhat isolated as a grouping, limiting prospects for an emergent insurgency parallel to that of Boko Haram," said Barclay. 

    de/sf/nb/jm/ach 

    © 1994-2015 Agence France-Presse


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    Source: UN Children's Fund
    Country: Mali

    Par Naoko Imoto

    Après avoir perdu ses deux parents dans le conflit et avoir dû quitter l'école lorsque les classes ont été suspendues, une fille du nord du Mali a l’occasion de recommencer son éducation grâce à un programme d'apprentissage accéléré soutenu par l'UNICEF.

    GAO, Mali, 14 décembre 2015 - Adaoula avait 8 ans quand une bombe a démoli sa maison dans la ville de Gao au nord du Mali en 2012. Elle a perdu ses deux parents dans l'explosion et, pendant longtemps, elle a été incapable de parler.

    Son école a été fermée début 2012, lorsque le conflit dans le nord du Mali a déplacé des dizaines de milliers de personnes et aggravé les conditions de vie de communautés déjà très exposées à l'insécurité alimentaire, à la malnutrition, aux épidémies, à la sécheresse et à une pauvreté chronique.

    Lorsque les écoles ont rouvert, Adaoula n’a pas pu y retourner car sa grand-mère, qui avait pris la jeune fille chez elle, n’avait pas assez d'argent pour payer les frais de scolarité. Alors, au lieu d’aller à l’école, Adaoula a dû participer aux corvées domestiques.

    « Pendant tout ce temps-là, je voulais juste aller à l'école », dit Adaoula avec un sourire timide.

    Des nouvelles excitantes

    Il y a quelques mois, le chef du village est venu rendre visite à sa grand-mère et lui a dit qu'il y aurait un cours d'apprentissage accéléré et que Adaoula pourrait le suivre pendant neuf mois, ce qui lui permettrait de continuer ses études. A l’issue de ce cours, elle pourrait retourner à l'école l'année suivante.

    Elle était folle d’enthousiasme.

    Adaoula s’asseoit toujours au fond de la classe. « Elle ne parle pas beaucoup, mais je peux voir qu’elle est très heureuse d’être à l'école, constate son professeur. Je connaissais ses parents. Je m’assurerai qu’elle réussisse en classe. Elle est très intelligente ».

    Une seconde chance

    Adaoula fait partie des 4 500 enfants non scolarisés dans les zones de conflit du Mali qui suivent ce programme d'apprentissage accéléré, organisé dans le cadre de la campagne de l'UNICEF « Chaque enfant compte ».

    Grâce à ce programme, les enfants âgés de 8 à 12 ans ont obtenu une nouvelle chance d'aller à l'école.

    Arakietou, 10 ans, une camarade de classe d’Adaoula fait partie des 12 enfants qui se rendent à l'école en pirogue sur le fleuve Niger.

    « Elle a été malade plusieurs années, alors je ne pouvais pas l’envoyer à l'école, dit sa mère. En plus, j’avais trop peur de l’envoyer par le fleuve, à cause de l’insécurité. »

    Le retour à l'école, cela signifie beaucoup de choses pour des enfants comme Adaoula et Arakietou : un sens renouvelé de la stabilité, un environnement sûr, et l’occasion de se bâtir un avenir meilleur. À bien des égards, c’est un monde nouveau pour ces enfants, un monde que chacun et chacune d’entre eux mérite.


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