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ReliefWeb - Updates

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    Source: Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict
    Country: Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Mali, Somalia

    This month’s update highlights children and armed conflict concerns and provides recommendations for the protection of children in the situations of Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Mali and Somalia. The update also notes that in March, the Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict is set to formally adopt the Afghanistan conclusions and receive the Secretary-General’s country specific report on Iraq. Watchlist is currently developing a policy briefing outlining key challenges and recommendations to inform the Working Group ahead of the Iraq conclusion negotiations.

    Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict is a network of local, national and international non-governmental organizations striving to end violations against children in armed conflicts and to guarantee their rights. Monthly updates are based on the experience of Watchlist and its member organizations in specific country situations and Watchlist’s expertise in over a decade of engagement with the Security Council’s children and armed conflict agenda.


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    Source: Government of Chad
    Country: Chad


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    Source: International Committee of the Red Cross
    Country: Cameroon

    The Far North Region of Cameroon continues to be the scene of clashes and violence, leaving many people dead or wounded and prompting hundreds of thousands to flee their homes. Many of the displaced have sought refuge in already struggling communities, putting further strain on means of subsistence, resources and services, including food, drinking water and health care.

    Meeting basic needs

    The ICRC’s assistance programme is designed to help victims of armed conflict and other situations of violence recover their self-sufficiency and preserve or restore their livelihoods.

    In 2015, food distributions for displaced people lasted from June to December. In MayoSava, Mayo-Tsanaga and Logone-et-Chari departments, almost 9,000 displaced families received food rations on three occasions, and almost 5,500 resident families received a single ration. Each ration comprises 75 kg of millet, 25 kg of beans, 1 kg of salt, 10 litres of palm oil and 12 kg of nutrient-rich “Super Cereal”.

    Some 6,950 displaced families also received essential household items.

    In June 2015, as part of its agricultural programme aimed at reviving food production, the ICRC distributed millet, okra, maize and bean seed, along with a one-off food ration, to 5,100 host or extremely vulnerable families. A total of 75 tonnes of seed and 250 tonnes of fertilizer were distributed.

    Distributions were carried out with the invaluable help of Cameroon Red Cross volunteers.

    Improving access to water and sanitation

    The ICRC and the Cameroon Red Cross carried out an assessment of the drinking water distribution system in host communities in Mayo-Sava and Mayo-Tsanaga. Across 62 villages, 220 of the 257 water points and 43 of the 84 hand pumps assessed were found to be in need of repair or replacement.

    Supporting health care

    The ICRC contributed to a training workshop for 29 hospital staff organized by the Ministry of Public Health, teaching a module on the stabilization and surgical treatment of bullet wounds.

    Following an assessment of the health-care system in the Far North Region, the ICRC took the decision to support the integrated health centres in Maltam (Logone-et-Chari) and Meme (Mayo-Sava) in 2016.

    Putting dispersed families back in touch

    Working closely with the Cameroon Red Cross, the ICRC pursued its efforts to help people separated from family members by conflict to trace and contact their relatives throughout Cameroon and in neighbouring countries. Particular attention is paid to the plight of unaccompanied children. The ICRC and Cameroon Red Cross are currently processing nearly 3,000 tracing requests, notably for people living in the refugee camps in the East and Far North regions of Cameroon. In 2015, the ICRC, with the support of the region’s National Societies, reunited 26 children with their loved ones.

    Visiting detainees

    The ICRC continued to visit places of detention to promote the humane treatment of detainees and to assess whether their living conditions complied with Cameroonian legislation and international standards.

    In 2015, the ICRC:

    • visited 5,500 detainees, mainly in places of detention in the Far North and East regions and in Yaoundé;

    • kept individual track of 288 detainees;

    • assisted the prison authorities in treating severe and moderate malnutrition among inmates in the places of detention worst affected by the increase in the prison population following the armed conflicts in the Far North and East regions (programme currently under way in the central prisons of Maroua and Bertoua);

    • upgraded health-care and water infrastructure in the same detention facilities;

    • provided 200 detainees in Yaoundé’s main prison with hygiene kits and mosquito nets.

    Cooperating with the Cameroon Red Cross

    The Cameroon Red Cross is the ICRC’s main operational partner in the country. The ICRC has stepped up its support to the National Society, in particular through first-aid training (with 42 trainers, 140 Cameroon Red Cross first-aiders and 40 community members trained in 2015), as well as through courses on intervention techniques in areas at risk, economic security assessment, restoring family links, protection and prevention of misuse of the emblem, and operational communication.
    The ICRC is also bolstering the National Society’s operational capacity by developing three of its premises in the Far North Region and providing logistical support in the form of 6 vehicles and 12 motorbikes donated in November.

    Promoting international humanitarian law

    The ICRC held regular bilateral talks with the armed and security forces, reminding them of their obligations under international humanitarian law (IHL) and of the duty to protect persons not, or no longer, taking part in the fighting.

    • 1,400 members of the armed and security forces and the penitentiary police were familiarized with the rules of IHL and international human rights law and with the ICRC’s mandate.

    • 40 military judges attended an advanced IHL training seminar.


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    Source: UN Security Council, UN Department of Public Information
    Country: Burundi, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Libya, Mali, occupied Palestinian territory, Senegal, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, World

    Africa would be at the heart of the Security Council’s work in March, with the 15-member body travelling to the continent ahead of open debates on the Great Lakes region and the role of women in conflict prevention and resolution, the Permanent Representative of Angola, the 15-member body’s President for the month, said today at a Headquarters press conference.

    Providing an overview of the Council’s forthcoming work, Ismael Abraão Gaspar Martins said the body would convene tomorrow morning for the adoption, hopefully by consensus, of a long-awaited resolution on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, as well as a resolution on South Sudan sanctions.

    The Council would then depart on 3 March for Senegal, Mali and Guinea-Bissau, marking the start of what Mr. Gaspar Martins described as “an African-centric programme” for the month, aimed at addressing lingering conflicts while emphasizing the continent’s potential for peace and development.

    “We want to change this narrative of Africa” being a place of unending turmoil, he said, emphasizing that the Council was hoping, by its presence on the ground, to serve as a “preventative element” in Mali and to see if it could help move the political agenda forward in Guinea-Bissau.

    Once back in New York, he said the Council would hold an open debate on 21 March on the prevention and resolution of conflicts in the Great Lakes region, and another on 28 March on the role of women in conflict prevention and resolution in Africa, including the role they can play in educating young people to become better citizens and in steering them away from terrorism.

    On South Sudan, speaking in his national capacity, the President cautioned against positions that would aggravate the conflict, such as applying sanctions on the main stakeholders. It was hoped that if the spread of arms could be reduced, a better situation for the future would emerge.

    Other topics to be taken up by the Council in March would include Libya and the Middle East, he said. Furthermore, there would be a briefing on 31 March on cooperation between the United Nations and the European Union, with the latter’s High Representative for Foreign Policy and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, participating.

    Highlights in the Council’s provisional programme of work include a briefing on Libya on 2 March, ahead of the adoption of a resolution regarding that country on 15 March, and a debate on the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) on 17 March. Six consultations regarding the Middle East were scheduled, including two on Syria on 23 and 30 March.

    Responding to a correspondent’s question regarding the nomination of the next Secretary-General, he said that question would be discussed more specifically in April, although there would be an informal gathering of Permanent Representatives in March as well. It was hoped that the next Secretary-General would be capable, regardless if it were a woman or a man.

    Asked about the resolution regarding the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, he said the text had been chiefly negotiated by the key stakeholders and that, hopefully, it would be adopted by consensus. He emphasized the role that China had played by inviting that country into negotiations. The nuclear programme in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea had touched a nerve, and therefore had to be dealt with. Confidence-building measures would meanwhile continue, as “the last thing we want to see is another war situation on the peninsula”.

    On the potential for women to serve as United Nations mediators, he said women in his country had been performing that role very actively. Women formed a majority in the world and it was thus normal that they should be involved — not because of their gender, however, but because they were capable.

    Asked about Syria in the context of the cessation of hostilities, he said there was agreement to hold a meeting upon the Council’s return from West Africa on 9 March. Separately, there would also be a briefing on the Israel-Palestine question on 24 March.

    In response to a question about Burundi, he said an erroneous interpretation of what had come out of Arusha, together with other factors, had fed a situation that came close to an ethnic clash. It was preferable to deal with the country’s President and encourage him to be more inclusive. Forcing him to step down would not be right.

    Concerning possible war crimes in Africa, he said they should first be addressed in the continent’s courts. All crimes had to be accounted for, wherever they were committed, but if the International Criminal Tribunal became overcrowded, it would not be able to function. There had to be accountability in countries first.

    For information media. Not an official record.


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    Source: UN Human Rights Council
    Country: Mali

    BAMAKO / GENEVE (2 mars 2016) – Au terme de sa visite dans le pays, L’Expert indépendant sur la situation des droits de l’homme au Mali, Suliman Baldo, a noté des avancées significatives dans la mise en œuvre de l’Accord pour la paix et la réconciliation, et l’arrêt des combats entre les groupes armés. Il a cependant exprimé son inquiétude face à l’impunité et à l’insécurité persistantes et qui touchent plus particulièrement le nord et le centre du pays.

    « Il faut saluer la dynamique actuelle. Le gouvernement et les groupes armés, qui sont signataires à l’Accord de paix, respectent leurs engagements envers le cessez-le-feu et continuent à prendre part à des négociations sérieuses pour faire avancer le processus », a déclaré l’expert au terme de sa sixième visite dans le pays du 21 février au 2 mars.

    Il a cependant déploré « des retards dans la mise en application des mesures prévues dans les accords pour renforcer la dévolution de pouvoirs aux instances régionales et locales ». Ces retards semblent avoir encouragé certains groupes ayant un intérêt dans la déstabilisation du Mali à intensifier leurs attaques contre les forces des FAMA et de la MINUSMA, occasionnant dans le même temps des pertes considérables parmi les populations locales.

    Aux attaques de ces groupes extrémistes violents, dits « djihadistes », dont les combattants sont souvent des étrangers, s’ajoutent les risques locaux grandissants de violence intercommunautaire. On note aussi des agressions contre la circulation des personnes, des biens civils et des humanitaires attribuées à des narcotrafiquants et autres bandits armés.

    « Des sources fiables m’ont rapporté que des individus avaient été agressés et volés alors qu’ils empruntaient des transports publics, et que des enfants avaient été tués ou blessés par des engins explosifs improvisés », a-t-il indiqué.

    M. Baldo s’est alarmé du fait que très peu d’endroits dans les zones du nord et du centre du Mali ont été sécurisés jusqu’à présent, malgré la signature de l’accord de paix il y a bientôt un an.

    « Je me suis rendu à Mopti, dans le centre du Mali, et j’ai recueilli des informations inquiétantes faisant état de graves violations et d’abus des droits de l’homme commis contre la population par des jeunes gens radicalisés et armés. Ces derniers agissent contre les représentants de l’Etat, y compris les enseignants et les écoles, et contre les chefs traditionnels qui s’opposeraient à leur idéologie », a ajouté l’expert indépendant.

    Des dérapages continuent dans le cadre des opérations militaires menées par les forces de l’ordre et les forces internationales pour neutraliser de tels groupes, a aussi souligné l’expert. On a ainsi relevé que des personnes interpellées avaient subi des mauvais traitements et que leur droit à des procédures judiciaires rapides n’avait pas été respecté.

    Les cas de détentions au-delà des délais légaux sont nombreux, a aussi noté l’expert, et des informations font état de représailles menées par les FAMA contre les populations locales suite à des attaques contre leurs forces.

    « L’insécurité qui règne, en particulier dans le centre et le nord du Mali, prive les populations de la jouissance de leurs droits et freine la reprise des services publics », a-t-il noté. « L’insécurité et l’absence ou l’insuffisance des services sociaux de base continuent à entraver le retour des réfugiés et des personnes déplacées qui souhaitent regagner leurs communautés dans les zones affectées par le conflit. »

    Cette situation souligne la nécessité de passer à une vitesse supérieure dans la mise en œuvre de l’Accord pour la Paix et la réconciliation. « Il incombe aux signataires de cet accord d’accélérer le processus de paix. Ceci est nécessaire pour assurer le plein respect des droits de l’homme, notamment la protection des civils et le retour de services de base et des forces de l’ordre public, particulièrement dans le centre et le nord du pays », a noté M. Baldo.

    « La situation sécuritaire au Mali nécessite une réponse robuste et décisive de la part du Mali, des pays de la région et de la communauté internationale », a déclaré l’expert. « Sinon, la situation des droits de l’homme ne pourra pas s’améliorer et les populations du centre et du nord vivront dans l’insécurité physique et alimentaire. »

    Quant aux mesures que le Gouvernement malien avait déployées pour lutter contre l’impunité pour les crimes graves commis dans le contexte de la crise depuis 2012, M. Baldo a noté avec préoccupation le peu de progrès enregistrés dans de nombreux dossiers. Seules les affaires des bérets rouges disparus et de la répression du contre-coup d’Etat, qui remontent à l’année 2012, semblent avancer. « Il ne faut absolument pas laisser un climat d’impunité s’installer », a-t-il insisté.

    M. Baldo s’est félicité de l’engagement du Mali sur la voie de la justice transitionnelle à travers l’établissement de la Commission Justice, Vérité et Réconciliation (CVJR). Il a noté que beaucoup de travail avait été fait jusqu’ici dans le domaine de la sensibilisation et de l’engagement pour la création des antennes régionales pour la CVJR.

    « L’élargissement de la composition de la Commission de 15 à 25 commissaires récemment décrété devra observer les normes de bonnes pratiques, y compris de transparence et de participation dans l’identification de nouveaux candidats », a observé l’expert de l’ONU.

    Au cours de sa visite, M. Baldo a rencontré des membres du Gouvernement malien, des représentants de la société civile, y compris des associations de victimes, des représentants des mouvements armés signataires de l’Accord de paix, ainsi que des membres du corps diplomatique et de l’ONU.

    L’Expert indépendant présentera un rapport sur la situation des droits de l’homme au Mali au Conseil des droits de l’homme le 22 mars 2016.

    M. Suliman Baldo (Soudan) a pris ses fonctions d’expert indépendant sur la situation des droits de l’homme au Mali le 1er août 2013. Le mandat a été renouvelé par le Conseil des droits de l’homme de l’ONU le 15 avril 2014 pour une période d’un an en vue d’aider le Gouvernement malien dans ses actions de promotion et de protection des droits de l’homme et dans la mise en œuvre des recommandations formulées dans les résolutions du Conseil. M. Baldo a occupé des fonctions de Directeur pour l’Afrique à la International Centre for Transitional Justice basé à New York et à la International Crisis Group. En 2011, il a été un des trois membres de la Commission international sur les violences post électorales en Côte d’Ivoire, mise sur pied par le Conseil des droits de l’homme de l’ONU.

    Pour consulter les rapports récents de l’Expert Indépendant, prière de se rendre sur le lien suivant : http://ap.ohchr.org/documents/dpage_e.aspx?m=203

    Les experts indépendants font partie de ce qui est désigné sous le nom des procédures spéciales du Conseil des droits de l’homme. Les procédures spéciales, l’organe le plus important d’experts indépendants du système des droits de l’homme de l’ONU, est le terme général appliqué aux mécanismes d’enquête et de suivi indépendants du Conseil qui s’adressent aux situations spécifiques des pays ou aux questions thématiques partout dans le monde. Les experts des procédures spéciales travaillent à titre bénévole; ils ne font pas partie du personnel de l’ONU et ils ne reçoivent pas de salaire pour leur travail. Ils sont indépendants des gouvernements et des organisations et ils exercent leurs fonctions à titre indépendant.

    Droits de l’homme de l’ONU – Page d’accueil du Mali : http://www.ohchr.org/FR/Countries/AfricaRegion/Pages/MLIndex.aspx

    Pour des informations additionnelles et des demandes des media, bien vouloir contacter :
    A Genève : Brian Ruane (+41 22 928 9724 / bruane@ohchr.org)
    A Bamako (pendant la visite): Guillaume Ngefa (+223 79879118 / ngefa@un.org)

    Pour les demandes médias liés à d’autres experts indépendants de l’ONU:
    Xabier Celaya - Service de presse (+ 41 22 917 9383 / xcelaya@ohchr.org)


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


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    Source: African Development Bank
    Country: Burkina Faso

    Une cérémonie de lancement du projet d’appui au pôle de croissance de Bagré s’est déroulée, le jeudi 25 février 2016, dans cette localité située dans la province centre-est du Burkina Faso. La Banque africaine de développement (BAD) y a pris part avec la présence de la représentante résidente, Antoinette Batumubwira. L’événement était présidé par le ministre burkinabé de l’eau et de l’assainissement, Niouga Ambroise Ouédraogo. Y ont également assisté le gouverneur de la région du Centre Est, des autorités locales, de la population des communes bénéficiaires et des partenaires techniques et financiers du projet tels que la Banque mondiale.

    Le projet (agriculture, élevage, pisciculture et écotourisme) interviendra en rive droite du lac de Bagré avec la réalisation d’ouvrages structurants en complémentarité aux financements apportés par le gouvernement et la Banque mondiale en rive gauche. La conception du projet privilégie l’approche chaîne de valeur d’une manière inclusive avec un accent particulier pour la transformation et la commercialisation des produits. Elle favorise également l’approche genre avec l’implication des femmes et des jeunes notamment les diplômés.

    Le projet bénéficiera de façon directe à plus de 13000 exploitants regroupant à la fois les petits producteurs, des jeunes diplômés chômeurs et des promoteurs privés. Les résultats générés permettront l’amélioration globale du cadre de vie des populations, la création d’emplois, un meilleur accès aux services de base, l’amélioration du statut nutritionnel des groupes vulnérables et l’accroissement des revenus des producteurs.

    La contribution de la Banque au financement de ce Projet s’élève à 29 millions de dollars EU dont 20,72 millions sous forme de prêt et 8,28 millions, sous forme de don. Ce financement traduit l’accompagnement soutenu de la Banque au développement de la zone de Bagré. En effet, la Banque était le principal Bailleur de fonds pour la construction du barrage de Bagré et de ses travaux connexes et avait soutenu les efforts du Burkina Faso pour le bouclage de son financement et la conduite à terme des travaux structurants.

    Ces premiers financements ont servi de leviers à d’autres investissements et ont permis de cibler le pôle de croissance de Bagré comme un agropole pilote prioritaire pour accroitre l’activité économique dans la zone grâce à l’augmentation des investissements privés, de la création d’emploi et de la production agricole.


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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: Mali, Mauritania

    Highlights

    • On 01 February 2016, WFP and UNHCR published the report of the Joint Assessment Mission (JAM) 2015 for Malian refugees carried out in August/September in Mberra refugee camp and four key host communities.

    • On 04 February 2016, preliminary recommendations of the 2015 country portfolio evaluation were presented and discussed with key partners. Findings will be used to reshape WFP interventions in country towards the new programme cycle.

    • On 11 February 2016, UN agencies warned that immediate funding shortfall threatens assistance to Malian refugees in Mberra.

    In Numbers

    468,000 people in need of food assistance
    198,000 people in need of nutrition assistance
    9 regions affected
    50,000 people displaced
    436,000 people targeted by WFP assistance among which 50,000 refugees

    Situation Update

     As per FEWSNET latest food security outlook, despite improvement in availability and access to food at country level, poorest rural families of the pastoral and agropastoral and rainfed livelihood zones will continue to struggle to afford some essential non-food expenditures such as health and education through March 2016.


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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Cameroon, Nigeria

    As of 29 February 2016, 21,998 Nigerians, including many who fled due to the insurgency, have returned back from Cameroon of which 54% are children, 46% are women, and 98% originated from Borno, UNHCR Nigeria is on the ground in Adamawa State Working closely with partners to implement a comprehensive response strategy. UNHCR's intervention includes supporting the monitoring of return movement and profiling of returning Nigerians, providing targeted assistance to returning Nigerians, developing the capacity of key stakeholders to the response and advocating for conditions of returns to comply with International legal norms.


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Cameroon, Central African Republic, Côte d'Ivoire, Liberia, Niger, Nigeria, Sierra Leone

    CAMEROON

    ARMY SAYS RESCUES HUNDREDS OF HOSTAGES

    The Government said on 26 February that it had rescued 850 villagers from Boko Haram during a joint military operation with Nigeria in which 92 members of the armed group were also killed. The operation was carried out in the Nigerian village of Kumshe near the border with Cameroon. Cameroon’s Far North region has repeatedly been hit by suicide attacks suspected to be perpetrated by Boko Haram.

    CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC

    FIRE LEAVES OVER 700 IDPS HOMELESS

    On 25 February, fire destroyed 85 huts at the Catholic Mission site for the displaced in the northern Batangafo town, leaving 758 people homeless. They have sought refuge at the Mission’s hall, schools, temporary classrooms and at the town hall. It is the third fire outbreak on the site since January.
    Meanwhile, humanitarian organizations are providing assistance to hundreds of IDPs following multiple fire outbreaks over the past month on various sites in Bambari, Batangafo and Kaga-Bandoro regions.

    COTE D’IVOIRE

    OVER 8,000 IVORIAN REFUGEES REPATRIATED

    On 23 and 25 February, UNHCR repatriated 536 Ivorian refugees from Liberia, with the UN mission (ONUCI) providing escorts on the Ivorian side. Most returnees are reintegrating well in their communities, according to UNHCR in Côte d’Ivoire. However, there have been reports of land disputes and difficulties in obtaining birth certificates and IDs. Since the resumption of the voluntary repatriation on 18 December 2015, 8,521 Ivorian refugees have returned home. UNHCR aims to repatriate 25,000 refugees by December 2016.

    NIGER

    PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION GOES FOR SECOND ROUND

    Run-off presidential vote will be held on 20 March between incumbent President Mahamadou Issoufou and detained former parliament speaker Hama Amadou.
    President Issoufou won 48.41 per cent of the vote while Amadou received 17.79 per cent of votes according to results announced by the electoral commission on 26 February. No major incidents were reported in the first round of voting on 21 February.

    EBOLA VIRUS DISEASE (EVD)

    FOUR SIERRA LEONE CONTACTS STILL MISSING

    No new cases were reported in the week ending on 28 February. In Sierra Leone, many of the missing contacts have been identified, leaving only four at large in Kambia district. Meanwhile, the inter-agency operation in the district ended on 25 February. All the reported deaths are being swabbed, however death alerts are still below the expected level and therefore not all deaths are being screened. In Guinea, notification of deaths remains active. Of the reported deaths across the country in the last week of February, 54 per cent were within communities. Monitoring of survivors, lab tests, cross-border surveillance and infection prevention measures are also ongoing.


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Cameroon, Central African Republic, Côte d'Ivoire, Liberia, Niger, Nigeria, Sierra Leone

    CAMEROUN

    DES CENTAINES D’OTAGES LIBÉRÉS SELON L’ARMÉE

    Le gouvernement a déclaré le 26 février qu'il avait sauvé 850 villageois de Boko Haram au cours d'une opération militaire conjointe avec le Nigeria où 92 membres du groupe armé ont également été tués. L'opération a été effectuée dans le village nigérian de Kumshe, près de la frontière avec le Cameroun. La région de l'Extrême Nord du Cameroun a maintes fois été frappée par des attentats-suicides soupçonnés d'être perpétrés par Boko Haram.

    RÉPUBLIQUE CENTRAFRICAINE

    PLUS DE 700 DÉPLACÉS SANSABRI À LA SUITE D’UN INCENDIE

    Le 25 février, un incendie a détruit 85 cases sur le site de la Mission Catholique pour les personnes déplacées de la ville de Batangafo, au nord, laissant 758 personnes sans abri.
    Elles ont trouvé refuge dans le hall d’accueil de la Mission, des écoles, des salles de classe temporaires et à l'hôtel de ville. Il s’agit du troisième incendie sur le site depuis janvier.
    Pendant ce temps, les organisations humanitaires apportent une aide à des centaines de personnes déplacées après plusieurs incendies au cours du mois passé sur différents sites dans les régions de Bambari,
    Batangafo et Kaga-Bandoro.

    COTE D’IVOIRE

    PLUS DE 8 000 RÉFUGIÉS IVOIRIENS RAPATRIÉS

    Les 23 et 25 février, le HCR a rapatrié 536 réfugiés ivoiriens du Libéria, avec la mission des Nations Unies (ONUCI) qui a fourni des escortes du côté ivoirien. La plupart des rapatriés sont bien réintégrés dans leurs communautés, selon le HCR en Côte d'Ivoire.
    Cependant, des litiges fonciers et des difficultés à obtenir des certificats de naissance et des papiers d’identité ont été rapportés.
    Depuis la reprise du rapatriement volontaire le 18 décembre 2015, 8 521 réfugiés ivoiriens sont rentrés chez eux.
    Le HCR a pour objectif de rapatrier 25 000 réfugiés d’ici décembre 2016.

    NIGER

    SECOND TOUR DE L’ÉLECTION PRÉSIDENTIELLE

    Le second tour de l’élection présidentielle aura lieu le 20 mars entre le Président sortant Mahamadou Issoufou et l'ancien président du parlement détenu, Hama Amadou. Le Président Issoufou a remporté 48,41% des voix tandis qu’Amadou a obtenu 17,79% des voix, selon les résultats annoncés par la commission électorale le 26 février. Aucun incident majeur n'a été signalé lors du premier tour du scrutin le 21 février.

    MALADIE À VIRUS EBOLA (MVE)

    QUATRES CONTACTS MANQUENT TOUJOURS À L’APPEL EN SIERRA LEONE

    Aucun nouveau cas MVE n’a été signalé au cours de la semaine se terminant le 28 février.
    En Sierra Leone, la plupart des contacts manquants ont été identifiés dans le district de Kambia, sauf quatre. Pendant ce temps, l'opération inter-agences dans le district a pris fin le 25 février. Des prélèvements sont effectués sur tous les décès signalés, mais les signalements sont encore en dessous du niveau attendu, par conséquent, tous les décès ne sont pas contrôlés. En Guinée, la notification des décès reste active. Parmi les décès signalés à travers le pays dans la dernière semaine de février, 54% étaient au sein des communautés, et non dans des centres hospitaliers. Le suivi des survivants, les tests de laboratoire, la surveillance transfrontalière et les mesures de prévention des infections sont également en cours.


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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Angola, Chad, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Niger, Rwanda, South Africa, World

    Actions will require more political will and investments for food security and nutrition

    1-2 March 2016, Accra - A two-day strategic workshop on FAO’s contribution to Africa’s 2025 Zero Hunger Challenge held in Accra, Ghana, expressed determination to strengthen partnerships and support regional institutions and member countries in accomplishing the commitment to end hunger by 2025.

    FAO Country Offices and partners from Angola, Chad, Ethiopia, Ghana, Malawi, Niger, Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa and delegates from African Union Commission, NEPAD/NPCA and Instituto Lula discussed ways to prioritize actions for enhanced investment and determine the required interventions to improve service delivery.

    “Africa’s 2025 Zero Hunger Challenge will require significant increase of budget allocations, concrete and appropriate policies, programmes and strategies coupled with strong political commitment and leadership”, Mr. Bukar Tijani, FAO Assistant Director-General and Regional Representative for Africa, told the participants.

    He also explained that the Zero Hunger Challenge combines traditional anti-hunger and nutrition interventions which focused on increasing diversified agricultural production and sustainable diets with innovative mechanisms in the field of social protection.

    Contributing to the dialogue by skype from Rome, Mr. Kostas Stamoulis, FAO Assistant Director-General for Economics and Social Affairs Department, reminded that the commitment to end hunger in Africa by 2025 stands as one of the central tenets of the Malabo Declaration which focuses on accelerated agricultural growth, halving of current levels of post-harvest losses and improved nutritional status, among other things.

    He indicated that greater emphasis need to be placed on translating political commitments into concrete policies and programmes, evidence-based and inclusive governance mechanisms, accountable and results-focused programme delivery and a gender-sensitive approach.

    FAO has concretely enhanced its assistance to four initial focus countries: Angola, Ethiopia, Malawi and Niger, to design and deliver value-added actions in support of their efforts to end hunger. Actions has focused on strategic partnerships with respect to investment, nutrition and social protection at country level, through South-South Cooperation (SSC) and other forms of collaboration between countries, regional institutions and RECs, UN agencies and other development partners such as the Civil Society, the private sector and the donor community.

    This year, the assistance is extended to Chad, Ghana, Kenya and Rwanda to support current governments’ efforts to eradicate food insecurity. Political will and governance for an inclusive growth and shared prosperity in Africa will be on the agenda of the 29th session of the FAO Regional Conference for Africa in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, (4 to 8 April 2016).

    Background

    The 23rd Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government held in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, from 26-27 June 2014, adopted the Malabo Declaration on Accelerated Agricultural Growth and Transformation for Shared Prosperity and Improved Livelihoods. As part of the recent commitments, the AU Heads of State and Government committed to ending hunger by 2025 and to achieve this, they further resolved to at least halve the current levels of post-harvest losses by the year 2025.

    One of the seven commitments that were adopted, “Ending Hunger in Africa by 2025”, grew out of the Renewed Partnership to End Hunger in Africa by 2025 initiative, involving the African Union Commission, its NEPAD Planning and Coordination Agency (NPCA), the Instituto Lula and FAO, among other partners.

    With a focused set of actions at national, sub-regional and continental levels, the investments and commitment FAO and partners make to ending hunger on the continent are critical prerequisites to achieving the African vision articulated in the Agenda 2063.

    Useful links:

    Africa's Renewed Partnerships to End Hunger by 2015

    Africa Solidarity Trust Fund

    Contact: Liliane.Kambirigi@fao.org


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    Source: UN Development Programme, UN Environment Programme
    Country: Mauritania

    The artisanal fishery sector in Mauritania is an important sector from a poverty-environment and gender perspective. Currently artisanal fishermen/women work in harsh conditions and with rudimentary tools resulting in poor catches, poor quality of the end products and as a consequence low incomes and overfishing. Aiming to inform decision-making, PEI Mauritania in 2015 concluded a study of how to improve the artisanal fisheries value-chain in order to fight poverty, especially in urban areas. The Department of Fisheries has applied the findings from the study when formulating the country’s new draft recovery plan on artisanal fishery products. Important donors such as UNDP and Japan have committed to support the Government of Mauritania to implement the plan in 2016. - See more at: http://www.unpei.org/latest-news/adding-value-to-mauritania%E2%80%99s-artisanal-fishery-sector-with-a-particular-focus-on-women#sthash.3K21JWBY.dpuf

    Inland fishing is another important source of income and livelihoods in Mauritania. However, inland fishing has been largely neglected in public policies. Existing data for proper planning and management is lacking and institutional capacity to sustainably mange inland lakes remains low. Seeking to shape a national response to these gaps, and building on the study mentioned above, PEI supported the Ministry of Fisheries to together with scientists and fisheries experts undertake a participatory diagnosis of permanent lakes in five districts. The diagnosis concluded that a need exists for an integrated ecosystem management approach that places socio-economic and biological dimensions at the center and promotes a community grounded participatory management approach. As a result of the assessment the Ministry of Fisheries has developed a strategy for the management of permanent lakes to be implemented in the coming two years. Inspired by the findings of the study, PEI Mauritania signed a partnership agreement with the National Society of Fish Distribution (SNDP – a government organization) to establish a self-financing mechanism to improve fish distribution businesses, currently subsidized substantially by the state, for the benefit of the poor. The agreement calls for a pilot program for a number of fish product distribution outlets that aim to increase the nutritional and health quality of fishery products, increase their added value, and their sale price. Under the framework of this program 60 women fish vendors participated in an 11 day training focusing on hygiene, quality and safety issues concerning processing and handling of fish. Parts of the training programme focused on how to improve fish product processing techniques, such as salting, drying and smoking, to improve compliance with health and hygiene regulations and facilitate sales of the fish products. Inspired by the positive feedback from the women who participated in the training SNDP budgeted for the training programme to be replicated throughout the country in 2016.


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    Source: Government of France, Government of the United Kingdom
    Country: France, Libya, Mali, Nigeria, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, World

    Following the meeting of the 34th Franco-British Summit, held today in Amiens, France and the United Kingdom have agreed an ambitious bilateral cooperation agenda which aims at deepening their strategic partnership.

    One hundred years ago, France and the United Kingdom fought together in the First World War. In memory of the sacrifices then made to defend their shared values, our two countries will commemorate the centenary of the Battle of the Somme on 1 July in Thiepval.

    One hundred years after those terrible times, France and the United Kingdom are still allies in overcoming new challenges and threats, notably terrorism. France will remember the expressions of solidarity shown by the British people after the attacks on its soil in January and November 2015, thus underlining the sense of friendship and the values that unite our two countries.

    France and the United Kingdom amplify their strength to work for peace and stability in the world from being Permanent Members of the United Nations Security Council, allied within NATO and [as] member states of the European Union. It is these partnerships which help to keep us safe. Our role in the European Union strengthens the security and prosperity of our citizens and the competitiveness of our economies. That Union that was created to bring peace and stability between countries that 70 years ago were at war. We should never take that achievement for granted. Today, in the face of threats on Europe’s borders and from terrorism at home, we are convinced that the European Union gives us more capacity to project greater power internationally.

    The President of the Republic and Prime Minister of the United Kingdom agreed to implement the following actions:


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

    Regional Highlights

    • Nigeria and the Lake Chad Basin continue to witness violence, displacement and food insecurity.
      Violence perpetrated by Boko Haram and military operations against the group continue to cause displacements in Cameroon’s Far North Region, the Lac Region of Chad, Niger’s Diffa Region, and in northeastern Nigeria.

    • The 2016 Humanitarian Response Plans have been finalized for Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria.
      Overall, some 9.2 million people - out of a population of 20.1 million living in areas affected by Boko Haram violence - are in need of humanitarian assistance.

    • Security risks deteriorating during the dry season. The dry season, which typically runs from December to May, will likely ease the movement of the armed group around the Lake Chad area and other far-flung locations.

    • Some 4.5 million people facing severe food insecurity urgently need support in the region, 90 per cent of them in north-east Nigeria. In the Far North region of Cameroon, the number of people in need of immediate food assistance has quadrupled since June 2015. In Niger, a quarter of the 2 million food insecure people targeted for assistance are in Diffa.

    Humanitarian Needs

    Population movement

    • Boko Haram violence and military counter-offensives continue to cause displacements. Registration is ongoing for tens of thousands of displaced people recently identified in Chad’s western Lac Region. This is in addition to new displacements in recent months of 100,000 people in Niger’s Diffa Region, and 80,000 people in northeastern Nigeria. In Cameroon, 158,000 people have been displaced by the conflict.

    • Some 150,000 people are being encouraged to return to their homes in Nigeria. Humanitarian partners advocate that all returns be voluntary and informed.
      Conditions in return areas need to be appropriate for sustainable returns owing to insecurity, lack of essential services and the presence of unexploded ordinances.

    Protection

    • Suicide bombings have increased in frequency and geographical spread, becoming almost daily occurrences. Raids on villages and the use of improvised explosive devices by suspected Boko Haram members continue to cause widespread devastation. Most suicide attacks are conducted by children, adolescents and women and target civilians in markets and mosques, and increasingly - internally displaced persons (IDPs) in sites.

    • Cases of recruitment of children have been reported, particularly of young girls and women to carry out suicide attacks. As a result, women and girls are subjected to stigmatization, which has led to an increased social acceptance of sexual and gender-based violence and harmful cultural practices, including early and forced marriage.

    • Social cohesion is at risk, particularly in Cameroon, Chad and Niger. Some communities perceived to be having links with Boko Haram face stigma and harassment. Distrust of refugees, displaced people and communities ethnically affiliated to Boko Haram supporters has led to inter-communal clashes. Vigilante groups established by the authorities have foiled many attacks, but have also reportedly committed exactions against minorities.

    Food Insecurity

    • Some 4.5 million people facing severe food insecurity urgently need support in the region, 90 per cent of them in north-east Nigeria. In the Far North region of Cameroon, the number of people in need of immediate food assistance has quadrupled since June 2015. Similarly, in the Mamdi department of Chad, the number of people facing severe food insecurity has risen tenfold in one year. In the Diffa region of Niger, 31 per cent of the population has reached crisis or emergency levels of food insecurity and preliminary results indicate a global acute malnutrition (GAM) rate of 22 per cent. Severe acute malnutrition rates for children under five have surpassed the emergency threshold in Borno and Yobe states in Nigeria, and in Cameroon, Chad and Niger.
      Throughout the region, around 310,000 are suffering from severe acute malnutrition.

    • WFP and its partners in recent weeks assisted thousands of people recently displaced by Boko Haram violence in Chad and Cameroon with food and nutrition support, the agency aims to reach up to 35,000 displaced people who have so far not received any assistance.


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

    An overlooked crisis

    The violent conflict in the Lake Chad Basin has continuously deteriorated over the last two years. Boko Haram raids and suicide bombings targeting civilians are causing widespread trauma, preventing people from accessing essential services and destroying vital infrastructure.

    Around 20 million people live in the affected areas across the four Lake Chad countries. The number of displaced people in the most affected areas has tripled in one year to 2.6 million. Most of the displaced families are sheltered by communities that count among the world’s poorest and most vulnerable. Food insecurity and malnutrition in the affected region have rapidly deteriorated.

    The unfolding crisis is as much a humanitarian emergency as it is a protection crisis. Many civilians are caught in the conflict. Women and children represent the majority of the displaced and bear the brunt of the violence, as Boko Haram attacks continue and military operations intensify.
    While the humanitarian strategy focuses on addressing life-saving needs of the population, concerted engagement of political, development and security actors is needed to help stabilize the region and c


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    Source: UN Resident Coordinator for Bhutan
    Country: Bhutan

    Situation Overview

    • A powerful windstorm has hit several villages in Punakha district on 25 February 2016 at around 10.00 am.
    • The windstorm affected the roofing structures of 17 households in Balana, Zhengosa, Saychena and Dragchukha chiwogs under Goenshari gewog including the roof structure of the Sewla Shedra’s (religious centre) kitchen under Chhubu gewog.
    • No human casualties were reported.
    • A detailed damage assessment is being carried out by the Dzongkhag Administration along with representatives from the Royal Insurance Corporation of Bhutan Ltd.

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    Source: Emirates News Agency
    Country: Mali

    The Emirates Red Crescent, ERC, is examining ways to expand its projects that fight water shortages in northern Mali by providing safe drinking water to residents of areas hit by drought, and water resources for animals which represent an essential source of income to locals.

    The ERC is seeking to establish the most effective ways to help locals fight the drought in coordination with the Mali Red Cross. The authority has also recently sent a delegation to visit north Mali to speak to residents about their requirements.

    Fahd Abdul Rahman bin Sultan, ERC Deputy Secretary-General, said that the authority plans to fight the water shortage using various methods including drilling wells in the desert and building dams to collect rain water for conservation and use in times of drought.

    Well-drilling projects are one of the leading projects for the authority in Mali.


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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Algeria, Eritrea, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Western Sahara, Yemen

    Breeding continuing in NW Africa while other areas remain calm

    Desert Locust breeding is still in progress in northern Mauritania and in adjacent areas of Western Sahara where locusts formed small groups of adults and, to a lesser extent, hoppers. Ground control operations have increased in both areas. Although breeding is likely to continue during March and cause a further increase in locust numbers and the formation of hopper and adult groups, the situation is expected to remain under control. As temperatures increase, low to moderate numbers of adults could move to spring breeding areas south of the Atlas Mountains in Morocco and Algeria and breed if rainfall occurs.

    In the Central Region, low numbers of locusts continue to persist in parts of the winter breeding areas along both sides of the Red Sea in Sudan, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. As very little rain has fallen recently, vegetation is drying out and breeding is expected to decline in the winter breeding areas. The situation remains less clear in the interior of southern Yemen where ecological conditions are expected to be favourable as a result of two cyclones in November. There is a risk that locusts may be present and breeding. If so, adult groups could form as vegetation dries out and move towards Oman.

    In Southwest Asia, the situation remains calm. Small-scale breeding is likely to occur in parts of southeastern Iran.


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    Source: Croix-Rouge Burkinabé
    Country: Burkina Faso

    Le « Projet d’Approvisionnement en eau potable des villages de l’aire sanitaire de Youga » a clos ses activités en début d’année 2016, au terme de 07 mois de mise en œuvre. Avant sa clôture, ses responsables ont posé un acte majeur au profit des populations des villages de Wilgo, Youga Peul et Songo, dans l’aire sanitaire de Zabré. En effet, dans le courant du mois de janvier 2016, la Croix-Rouge burkinabè en partenariat avec la Croix-Rouge de Monaco ont procédé à la cérémonie de réception des forages au profit des habitants de ces localités. Cette initiative qui est l’un des temps forts de ce projet, a fortement ravi les populations bénéficiaires. Ce projet a été financé par The White Feather Foundation dans le cadre de la mise en œuvre du projet eau, hygiène et santé communautaire dans l’aire sanitaire de Youga.

    Cette cérémonie est la concrétisation des engagements pris par la Croix-Rouge burkinabè et son partenaire de la Croix-Rouge de Monaco pour soulager les communautés des villages concernés afin d’améliorer leurs conditions de vie. Les clés des différents forages ont été symboliquement remises aux présidents des Associations des Usagers de l’Eau (AUE) de chaque village par l’entremise du point focal WASH de la commune de Zabré.

    Et c’est tout naturellement que les populations étaient nombreuses pour manifester leur reconnaissance aux donateurs. D’ailleurs pour la circonstance, plus de 400 personnes de Wilgo, Youga peulh et de Songo ont pris part à ces cérémonies de réception.

    Par l’entremise de leur porte-parole, ils ont laissé entendre que ces forages vont changer leur vie, parce que « cela fait au moins 40 ans que nous avons des problèmes pour avoir accès à l’eau potable. Nous disons un grand merci à la Croix-Rouge burkinabè et à la Croix-Rouge de Monaco qui répondent ainsi à l’une de nos principales préoccupations ».

    L’équipe projet a saisi l’occasion de cette cérémonie pour leur prodiguer des conseils pratiques relatifs à la bonne gestion des forages. Ils ont été également invités à mettre en place un mécanisme de collecte de fonds communautaire pour les entretiens préventifs et les réparations en cas de panne. Avant la remise, les initiateurs du projet se sont surtout assurés de la conformité des ouvrages avec les caractéristiques définies dans les dossiers d’appel d’offre. Du reste sur ce volet et en collaboration avec la commune de Zabré, quatre artisans réparateurs ont déjà été formés aux techniques d’entretien et de réparation des Pompes à Motricité Humaine. Ils ont bénéficié de caisses à outils pour la pratique sur le terrain.

    Les travaux de forage de ces ouvrages lancé en décembre 2015, ont duré deux semaines. Ils avaient permis de déceler deux forages positifs à Youga Peul et Wilgo. En janvier 2016, un ancien puits a été transformé en Pompe à Motricité Humaine à Songo.

    Dans le village de Wilgo, la cérémonie a été couplée à une remise de matériels d’hygiène et d’assainissement par le Comité Féminin d’Hygiène et d’Assainissement (CFHAC) de Wilgo à quelques ménages des quartiers bénéficiaires du forage. A Songo, la réception a été faite en présence de l’entreprise de construction, de la commune de Zabré, du volontaire communautaire, de quelques leaders et bien évidement de l’équipe projet.

    Le « Projet d’Approvisionnement en eau potable des villages de l’aire sanitaire de Youga » a démarré ses activités en juillet 2015 avec pour objectif majeur d’améliorer l’approvisionnement en eau potable des villages de Youga Peul et de Wilgo. Il est soutenu par la White Feather Foundation avec un financement de 16 millions FCFA. Le projet a clos ses activités en janvier 2016.


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