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ReliefWeb - Updates

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

    Le Plan de réponse humanitaire (HRP) 2017 s’inscrit dans la stratégie d’action humanitaire régionale lancée en 2014 au Mali et dans huit autres pays du Sahel. Cette stratégie comporte trois objectifs qui sont adaptés comme suit au contexte national du Mali.

    L’évaluation des effectifs des personnes dans le besoin au Mali, qui sous-tend la planification de la réponse, a été réalisée par secteur d’intervention. Il a été estimé qu’en 2017, environ 3,7 millions de personnes nécessiteraient une assistance (soit 20 % de la population malienne)1 Le Plan de réponse humanitaire au Mali vise à apporter une assistance humanitaire aux plus vulnérables pour renforcer leur accès aux services sociaux de base, améliorer leurs moyens de subsistance et leur capacité de résilience et consolider la préparation aux urgences.

    Il comporte près de 140 projets présentés par 50 partenaires et requiert un financement de 293 millions de dollars (USD). Les actions proposées ciblent en priorité les zones touchées par le conflit dans le nord et le centre du pays, ainsi que les populations déplacées, retournées ou rapatriées.

    À travers ce plan, 1,36 million de personnes seront assistées par des interventions dans huit secteurs : la sécurité alimentaire, la nutrition, la santé, l’eau-hygiène-assainissement, l’éducation, la protection, les abris et biens non alimentaires, et le relèvement précoce. Le plan assurera aussi la coordination de la réponse.


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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, Thomson Reuters Foundation
    Country: Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, Yemen

    by Stephen O'Brien | https://twitter.com/unreliefchief
    Wednesday, 15 March 2017 15:57 GMT

    Any views expressed in this article are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation.

    Allowing famine to unfold is a choice; we must make the choice to stop it

    The life of seven-month-old Sundus hangs by a thread in central Yemen. She has known little but hunger and sickness for most of her short life. She is caught in the vicious cycle of malnutrition and disease alongside millions of other innocent women, girls, boys and men because of a war that is not her own.

    The world is already facing the largest humanitarian crisis since the end of the Second World War, with almost 130 million people in 33 countries in need of life-saving humanitarian assistance and protection. But now, Sundus is one of 20 million people in north-eastern Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen who are experiencing starvation, famine, or the risk of famine.

    In north-eastern Nigeria, over 5 million people are severely food insecure and 450,000 children are suffering from severe acute malnutrition. In the worst-affected and least accessible areas of Borno and Yobe states, 55,000 people face famine-like conditions.

    In South Sudan, 100,000 people are already facing famine, with another 1 million on the brink.

    In Somalia, largely due to consecutive and severe droughts, there are worrying similarities to the famine of 2011, when more than a quarter million people died – half of them before the famine was officially declared. Food prices are rising, animals are dying, and close to 3 million people cannot meet their daily food needs.

    Yemen is facing the largest humanitarian crisis in the world with a third of the country – almost 19 million people – requiring humanitarian and protection assistance. More than 7 million people need urgent food assistance. With health facilities destroyed and damaged, diseases are sweeping through the country. Some 462,000 children are suffering from severe acute malnutrition and a child dies every 10 minutes of preventable causes.

    The warning call and appeal for action by the Secretary-General of 22 February 2017 cannot be understated. While the specificities of each context are complex and unique, all four countries have one thing in common: man-made conflict or insecurity. This means we have the possibility to prevent – and end – further misery and suffering. It will take all of us to do so. Without collective and coordinated global efforts, people will simply starve to death. Many more will suffer and die from disease. Children will be stunted and forced out of school. People’s livelihoods, and their hope for the future will be lost. Development gains will be reversed. Many more will be displaced and move in search of survival, creating ever more instability across entire regions.

    Across all four countries, the UN and partners are engaged in large-scale operations, with strategic, coordinated plans, and strong leadership and teams. In 2016, more than 2.3 million people in north-eastern Nigeria received food and agriculture assistance, while 1.1 million received water, sanitation and hygiene support. Around 5 million people in South Sudan received aid last year through a network of more than 130 operational partners across the country. We reached more than 1 million people in Somalia with food and livelihoods support. In Yemen, 120 partners are already delivering life-saving assistance and protection to nearly 6 million people every month in all 22 governorates.

    Yet, sadly, this is not enough and more needs to be done. Given the funding, and the access, we are ready to extend the operations further.

    Humanitarian partners urgently need $4.4 billion to respond to and avert famine and save thousands of lives. The money will translate into malnutrition treatment programmes for children and adults, emergency food aid deliveries, livestock support, health interventions, clean water, sanitation and hygiene support, and cash transfers for millions of the most vulnerable people. Time is running out. So far, we have received only $429 million of this amount.

    Only combined with access will the funding be enough to avert the worst. In all four countries, aid workers face enormous challenges in delivering assistance due to ongoing violence, insecurity and bureaucratic impediments. Parties to conflicts are also arbitrarily denying sustained humanitarian access and politicizing aid. These parties claim to represent people, yet their conduct against international humanitarian and human rights law perpetuates and increases the suffering. If they don’t change their behaviour now, they must be held accountable for the inevitable famine, death and suffering that will follow. This also applies to States and Governments who have influence over warring parties. I appeal to their conscience to exert pressure on the parties to conflict to allow for safe, full and unimpeded humanitarian access so we can reach those in need.

    We are working hand-in-hand with development partners to marry the work of immediate life-saving with longer-term sustainable development. This will require a new way of working, including more risk tolerance, earlier engagement and more flexible and context-driven programming.. Some donors are already supporting such efforts.. For instance the World Bank Group is significantly scaling up its response in some of these countries, both with short and long-term support to meet immediate needs and reduce them in the future.

    However, the gains we make will only take hold if Governments commit to political solutions to bring an end to the complex and bloody conflicts that have destroyed millions of people’s lives across each of these countries. To continue on the path of war and military conquest is to guarantee failure, humiliation and moral turpitude.

    It is possible to address and avert these famines, and to prevent human catastrophe on a massive scale but we must act quickly and not wait until it is too late. Allowing famine to unfold is a choice; we must make the choice to stop it. To fail to do so would be a stain on our collective moral conscience. We have no time to lose.

    Stephen O'Brien is the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator.


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    Source: Norwegian Refugee Council
    Country: Afghanistan, Nigeria, South Sudan, United States of America, World

    The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) is alarmed by US President Donald Trump’s announcement today of his administration’s intention to cut the international affairs budget, which includes humanitarian aid, development and diplomacy, by US$10.1 billion or 28 per cent, to bolster a $54 billion hike in military spending.

    “The question is not if human lives will be lost as a result of President Trump’s decision to slash spending on foreign aid and diplomacy; the question is how many and how soon,” warned Joel Charny, NRC’s Director in the United States.

    “Today, over 65 million people are on the move, forced from their homes by war and persecution. A famine was recently declared in parts of South Sudan. Multiple other countries face mass starvation. It’s inhumane to make unprecedented cuts to aid like this, at a time when we are struggling to respond to multiple humanitarian crises.”

    The United States is the largest humanitarian donor in the world. In 2016 alone, it provided $6.4 billion for emergencies - about a third of the overall $22.1 billion spent globally by aid agencies. This included distributing lifesaving food in South Sudan, preventing HIV/AIDS in Nigeria and rebuilding Afghanistan’s education system so children can return to school.

    But while the amount of foreign aid the US donates is high, it is less than 1 per cent of its overall federal budget.

    “The potential savings do not justify the cost in terms of the lives lost and the negative impact on vulnerable people around the world,” said Charny.

    The Trump budget proposal states that it retains “significant funding for humanitarian assistance,” although it does not provide a detailed breakdown of specific accounts. The one humanitarian account mentioned is the $70 million Emergency Refugee and Migration Assistance (ERMA), a contingency fund for rapid response to displacement crises that the budget proposal eliminates.

    Even if humanitarian aid spending is maintained but development aid is cut, this will have disastrous effects. Development aid is vital to prevent emergencies and help societies to recover afterwards. It helps create a more stable world. Development aid is a more effective way to make America safer, not increasing military spending, which is already at a level greater than the combined total of the military budgets of the next 11 countries.

    “We are also deeply worried that the foreign aid cuts are not just about money,” Charny said. “They are about disrupting the global institutions that President Trump does not believe in, like the United Nations. The UN was set up after World War II to make the world a safer place. But as part of the President’s America First agenda he wants to weaken it and condition US support on furthering US national interests.”

    “This will make America and the world much more insecure.”

    Contacts: In Washington: Joel Charny, Director, NRC USA, joel.charny@nrc.no Phone number: + 1 202 360 7049

    In Oslo: Michelle Delaney, Media Adviser, michelle.delaney@nrc.no Phone number: + 47 941 65 579


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    Source: World Food Programme, Food Security Cluster
    Country: Nigeria

    Key messages

    Market availability and physical access

    • Hikes in prices of food commodities in the markets of Borno and Yobe States as well as other parts of the country have been compounded by the ongoing economic recession, depreciation in the value of the Naira, increased cost of transportation and rising inflationary trends.

    • Staple food commodities are widely available in the markets of Borno and Yobe States, with the exception of Gubio where traders reported limited availability of maize, yam, millet and fish.

    • Markets in these two states are accessible throughout the year with the exception of GujbaBumsa and Geidam markets (Yobe) as well as Gubio and Magumeri (Borno) due to insecurity.

    Characteristics of traders

    • More than 80 percent of traders in both Borno and Yobe States have employed people in their business and these are mostly men. More than half of traders in both states have more than 5 employees.

    • Only 1 out of the 126 traders interviewed in Borno State and 7 out of the 482 traders interviewed in Yobe State are female. Female traders are mostly engaged in both retail and wholesale/retail.

    • Some 87 percent of traders (419) in Yobe and 77 percent (97 traders) of those interviewed in Borno State belong to a trader association.

    • Whereas only 34 percent of traders (43) in Borno State have a valid food trading license, the proportion for Yobe State is 74 percent (357 traders).

    Traders’ business and response capacity

    • The largest stocks of maize, millet, local rice and imported rice are held in Bullunkutu, Kasua Shanu and Bolore Stores in Borno State and in Jacusko-Buduwa, Bade-Gashua and Potiskum market in Yobe State.

    • In the event of a 25 percentage point increase in demand, 78.6 percent of traders (99 traders) in Borno will be able to deliver adequate stocks within a week. Similarly, 80 percent of traders (385) in Yobe State have the capacity to respond to a 25 percentage point increase in demand within week.

    Constraints to trader

    • Lack of capital, insecurity and high cost of transport are the three main constraints affecting traders across the two north eastern states of Yobe and Borno. Among wholesale and wholesale/retailer traders in Borno State, the top constraint to trade is high cost of transportation while retailers are more concerned with insecurity. In Yobe State on the other hand, lack of capital is the top concern among all categories of traders.

    Stock strategy

    • Some 12.4 percent traders (60) in Yobe and 12 percent (15 traders) in Borno stored products from the last agricultural season in order to resell in 2017. In Yobe State, these traders are mostly located in Bade-Gashua, Potiskum and Bumsa markets and to a lesser extent Yusufari while in Borno State, these traders are in Konduga, Bolore stores and Abba Gamaram.

    • As compared to the previous year, most traders in the markets of Borno State have observed a worsening access to storage facilities. In Yobe State on the other hand, an improvement in storage facilities has been observed by most traders.

    Capacity for voucher

    • Some 65.9 percent of traders (83) in Borno State have bank accounts. Of the traders with bank accounts, 36 percent (30) are retailers while 32.5 percent (27) are wholesale traders. Wholesale/retail traders constitute 31.3 percent (26). Similarly, 67.6 percent of traders (326) in Yobe have bank accounts of whom 43.2 percent are wholesale/retail traders while 35.5 percent retailers and 21.4 percent wholesalers.

    • Some 42.7 percent of traders (206) in Yobe and 38 percent of their counterparts (48) in Borno State are willing to accept Airtel mobile money payment from customers in exchange for food.

    • Some 3-4 weeks delay in payments for additional demand would be problematic for 60% traders (76) in Borno and 55.4 percent of traders (267) in Yobe.


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    Source: US Agency for International Development
    Country: Cameroon, Chad, Niger, Nigeria, United States of America

    HIGHLIGHTS

    • USG partners continue response to Critical and Extreme Critical levels of malnutrition in northeastern Nigeria

    • USAID/FFP partner WFP reaches more than 1 million people in northeastern Nigeria with emergency food assistance in February

    • Conflict displaces nearly 9,100 people in Borno between February 24 and March 14

    KEY DEVELOPMENTS

    • From March 1–7, a UN Security Council (UNSC) delegation traveled to the Lake Chad Basin Region, which comprises areas of Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria, to observe humanitarian and security conditions and meet with national government and regional officials, UN agencies, and other stakeholders. Citing the magnitude of humanitarian needs in the region, the UNSC called on the international community to provide urgent support to conflict-affected populations and regional governments in a post-trip statement.

    • Food insecurity and acute malnutrition remain significant concerns in northeastern Nigeria, where relief agencies continue to document IPC 4—Critical—and IPC 5— Extreme Critical—levels of malnutrition, according to an early March report by the USAID-funded Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET).4 In response, the USG is supporting humanitarian efforts to provide emergency food and nutrition assistance to conflict-affected populations and conduct malnutrition prevention and education interventions in Nigeria, as well as in other areas of the Lake Chad Basin Region.

    • With USAID/FFP support, the UN World Food Program (WFP) reached more than 1 million people with in-kind food distributions and cash-based assistance in Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe states in February—the third consecutive month in which the UN agency reached 1 million people. The beneficiary total represents a significant scale-up in operations since late 2016, when WFP reached approximately 160,000 people per month with food assistance. WFP and many other response organizations continue resource mobilization and logistics planning efforts to further expand operations and reach additional vulnerable communities in northeastern Nigeria.


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    Source: US Agency for International Development
    Country: Cameroon, Chad, Niger, Nigeria


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    Source: Department for International Development, Tufts University, Oxfam
    Country: Afghanistan, Angola, Chad, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Niger, Sierra Leone, Sudan, World

    This systematic review, commissioned by the Humanitarian Evidence Programme (HEP) and carried out by a research team from the University of Sheffield, represents the first attempt to apply systematic review methodology to establish the relationships between recovery and relapse and between default rates and repeated episodes of default or relapse in the management of acute malnutrition in children in humanitarian emergencies in low- and middle-income countries

    • the relationship between recovery and relapse; and between relapse and default or return default/episodes of default in children aged 6–59 months affected by humanitarian emergencies
    • reasons for default and relapse or return defaults/episodes of default in children aged 6–59 months affected by humanitarian emergencies.

    Severe acute malnutrition (SAM, or severe wasting) and moderate acute malnutrition (MAM, or moderate wasting) affect 52 million children under five years of age around the globe. This systematic review seeks to establish whether there is a relationship between recovery and relapse or a relationship between default rates and/or repeated episodes of default or relapse following treatment for SAM and MAM in children aged 6–59 months in humanitarian emergencies. The review also seeks to determine the reasons for default and relapse in the same population.

    The systematic review, together with corresponding executive summary and evidence brief, forms part of a series of humanitarian evidence syntheses and systematic reviews commissioned by the Humanitarian Evidence Programme. Other reports in the series review the evidence on interventions or approaches to mental health, child protection, market support and household food security, acute malnutrition, pastoralist livelihoods, shelter self-recovery and urban response.

    The Humanitarian Evidence Programme is a partnership between Oxfam GB and the Feinstein International Center at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University. It is funded by the United Kingdom (UK) government’s Department for International Development (DFID) through the Humanitarian Innovation and Evidence Programme.


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    Source: UN Children's Fund, Education Cluster
    Country: Mali


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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: South Sudan, Uganda

    This is a summary of what was said by UNHCR spokesperson Babar Baloch – to whom quoted text may be attributed – at today's press briefing at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.

    Eight months after fresh violence erupted in South Sudan, a famine produced by the vicious combination of fighting and drought is now driving the world’s fastest growing refugee crisis.

    Total displacement from South Sudan into the surrounding region is now 1.6 million people. The rate of new displacement is alarming, representing an impossible burden on a region that is significantly poorer and which is fast running short of resources to cope.

    No neighbouring country is immune. Refugees are fleeing into Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Central African Republic. Almost half have crossed into Uganda, where in the country’s north, the situation is now critical. Until recently we were seeing new arrivals there at a rate of around 2,000 people daily. The influx peaked in February at more than 6,000 in a single day. In March, the peak in a single day has been more than 5,000 with the current daily average of over 2,800 arrivals.

    A result of the rapid influx is that transit facilities in northern Uganda set up to deal with the newly arriving refugees from South Sudan are becoming overwhelmed. Recent rains in the area have not helped matters, and are adding to the misery.

    Today’s situation in Uganda is proving to be the first and major test of commitments made at last September’s Summit for Refugees and Migrants in New York, including a key commitment to apply a game-changing approach to refugee situations worldwide - known as the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF).

    Uganda is a frontline state for this new approach. Along with 5 other countries it has agreed to champion the CRRF by taking actions to integrate humanitarian efforts with developmental ones. These include providing land to refugees, including refugees in national development plans, and allowing them to access job markets.

    These efforts are at grave risk of failing unless there is urgent and large-scale additional support. At present funding for South Sudanese refugees in the region is at just 8 per cent out of the required US$781.8 million. UNHCR’s own funding appeal for Uganda is short by more than a quarter of a billion dollars (US$267 million).

    END

    For more information on this topic, please contact:

    Charlie Yaxley, UNHCR Uganda: yaxley@unhcr.org; +256 776 720 045


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    Source: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Country: Afghanistan, Colombia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti, Iraq, Madagascar, Myanmar, Nepal, Nigeria, Philippines, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, United States of America, World, Yemen, Zimbabwe

    FEATURE

    Iraq

    AFFECTED AREAS Mosul district, Salahuddin governorate

    CAUSE OF DISPLACEMENT Conflict

    FIGURES About 43,000 new displacements between January and 5 March

    CONTEXT

    About 42,000 people were displaced from Mosul between 27 February and 5 March. This is the highest continuous displacement since 17 October when the government began an offensive to take control of eastern Mosul from Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). More than 13,000 people were displaced on 3 March alone. Most displacements between 27 February and 5 March were due to military operations in western Mosul, which were initiated on 19 February (OCHA, 5 March 2017). The displacement came as the battle for Mosul entered more densely populated areas, including the Kuwait, Ma’mun, Tayaran and Wadi Hajar neighbourhoods, and Abu Saif village (OCHA, 28 February 2017).

    The most recently displaced people said food shortages and intense fighting forced them to join more than 195,000 Iraqis in 21 camps built by UN agencies and the government around Mosul. “The newest arrivals are in a desperate condition, visibly traumatized, hungry and dehydrated. Many arrived without shoes and wearing soaking clothes, having walked long distances to reach safety at government checkpoints” (UNHCR, 7 March 2017).

    Up to 750,000 people in western Mosul city remained largely inaccessible to humanitarians, sheltering from the fighting or waiting for a better time to flee. They risked being caught in the crossfire, and suffered shortages of food, water, medicine and fuel (OCHA, 2 March 2017; IOM, 28 February 2017).

    Of the 256,000 people displaced from Mosul between 17 October and 2 March about 192,000 remained displaced as of 2 March, the highest number of IDPs since the crisis began. The remaining 64,000 people returned to their areas of origin (OCHA, 2 March 2017).

    About 125 families (more than 800 people) were displaced in Salahuddin governorate between January and 5 March by forces backed by the Iraqi government because they were thought to have ties to ISIL. The displaced people were held against their will in a camp near Tikrit. Some of their homes were destroyed. Hundreds of other families were displaced after an August 2016 decree that ordered the expulsion of relatives of ISIL members and said anyone affiliated with ISIL had no right to return to the governorate. Families from Babil and Anbar governorates faced similar difficulties when returning (Human Rights Watch, 5 March 2017).


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    Source: IHH
    Country: Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Yemen

    IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation delivered food aid to 4.000 people in Southern Sudan and 500 families in Yemen. Moreover IHH will soon open 110 new wells in East Africa.

    IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation continues humanitarian relief operations in five continents and 135 countries without discriminating in terms of race, religion, or denomination. IHH has recently launched a campaign for emergency aid to Somalia, Southern Sudan and Yemen, which are affected by drought and conflict. While 110 wells are under construction in East African countries 500 families have received food aid in conjunction with the campaign.

    110 New Wells in East Africa

    IHH teams started working on to open 40 wells in Somalia where the drought is most severely felt, 30 wells in Darfur, 10 wells in Kenya, 20 wells in Ethiopia, and 10 wells in Djibouti.

    Thanks to the ongoing support of its donors IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation has opened 2.680 wells in East African countries primarily in those struggling with drought such as Somalia, Ethiopia, Sudan and Kenya.

    So the number of wells that IHH opened around the world reached 5.984.

    Emergency Aid to 4.000 Families from Southern Sudan

    IHH teams who went to Southern Sudan to coordinate the aid operations in the field started working in capital Juba. They are distributing food hampers each 27 kg that includes corn flour, wheat flour, vegetable oil, rice, sugar and beans.

    IHH East Africa Department coordinator Ismail Songür, who is heading the team, said “If donors keep up their support we are planning to deliver aid to bigger number of people here.”

    “We have carried out our aid in Mahad and Don Bosco camps located in Juba, capital of Sourthern Sudan. We have delivered emergency aid to 4.000 people living in the camps. Moreover we are planning to deliver aid to internally displaced people from Bentui region. Because the central government has totally collapsed here the need is greater. We hope to receive support from charitable donors,” he added.

    Aid Delivered to 500 families in Yemen

    14,4 million people need food and potable water in Yemen plagued by civil war. There are over 3 million internally displaced people who need safe shelters. IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation carries out humanitarian operations nonstop in the region

    In conjunction with the aid campaign launched for Yemen IHH delivered food aid to 500 families in Sana, and Amran.

    New Aid on the Way

    IHH is geared up to increase the aid with the support of donors.


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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: South Sudan

    Key Findings

    • Overall, South Sudanese households have faced the worst food security situation in the immediate period after the harvest season. The level of food insecurity has increased in all the ten states compared to the same time in the previous year (2015).
    • More than two-thirds (67 percent) of the households across the country are facing moderate to severe food insecurity. This is the highest level of food insecurity during this time of the year since FSNMS started reporting in 2010. Some three-fourths of the households recorded below acceptable food consumption scores; 44 percent of those had poor consumption and 30 percent had borderline. Considering the household hunger scale, some two-thirds of the households were in a moderate to severe hunger (58 percent moderate and 6 percent severe) up from 55 percent at the same time one year ago.
    • In addition to traditionally food insecure areas such as in the Greater Upper Nile region; high food insecurity levels were also observed in the Equatorias region, an indication of the impact of prevailing insecurity in this region.
    • Overall, households were spending about 76 percent of their monthly expenditures on food, significantly higher than the same period last year (57 percent).
    • Households have been facing challenges in sustaining income through their livelihoods. 78 percent of the households reported switching from some of their livelihood activities in the past three years. Thus significant drops in income from agriculture and livestock was reported. 93 percent of the respondents reported their income either reduced or remained the same compared to one year ago. This had an adverse impact on household food security at a time when the food prices have sky rocketed with year on year increase of about 500 percent in December 2016.
    • Overall, high food prices was the number one shock reported by most households, followed by insecurity and lack of access, and human sickness.
    • As a result of food insecurity, some 64 percent of households were found to be adopting food based coping strategies while 58 percent were adopting livelihood based coping strategies; overall half of the households were adopting crisis to emergency coping strategies with significant negative impacts on their livelihoods. The frequency of food based coping practices was significantly higher than the same period last year.
    • Overall, global acute malnutrition (GAM) rate was at 12.5 percent about the same level as during the same time last year (13.0 percent). However a worsening nutrition situation atypical of a harvest season is observed in the Greater Equatoria region. While the FSNMS does not provide county level results, very high GAM rates were observed in counties in Southern Unity based on SMART surveys and MUAC screening, indicating a worsening nutrition situation.

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    Source: IRIN
    Country: Angola, Burundi, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, World, Zimbabwe

    By Obi Anyadike, Editor-at-Large and Africa Editor

    Farmers, traders and consumers across East and Southern Africa are feeling the impact of consecutive seasons of drought that have scorched harvests and ruined livelihoods.

    Read more on IRIN


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    Source: UN Mission in South Sudan
    Country: South Sudan

    Mr. Chairman, Excellencies and distinguished delegates,

    I would like to thank H.E Ndumiso Ntshinga, the President of the African Union Peace and Security Council for providing me the opportunity to address this august body for the first time. The United Nations maintains its partnership with this organisation to advance peace, security, human rights, as well as social and economic development on the continent, particularly in South Sudan.

    Mr. Chairman,

    I arrived in Juba less than two months ago and have prioritised travelling to almost all parts of the country. Juba is not South Sudan, I’ve been repeatedly told on my missions. I am astonished by the complexity of issues and inter-ethnic conflicts across the regions. The United Nations Mission (UNMISS) has a broad presence across the country, with 12,000 peacekeeping troops, 2,000 police and more than 2,000 civilian personnel present in more than 15 different locations. From where we are based, we protect hundreds of thousands of civilians, address issues of reconciliation amongst local communities, monitor human rights and support humanitarian activities.

    I have no doubt that these efforts have saved the lives of tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of South Sudanese.

    Yet, the situation in South Sudan continues to deteriorate and generate profound human suffering for the population of that country – suffering in which local and ethnic divisions have been exploited for political ends.


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    Source: European Commission, European Commission's Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations
    Country: Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda

    On the occasion of an official visit to the African Union in Addis Ababa, Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica, announced a support package of €165 million to address the multiple crises in the Horn of Africa region.

    Commissioner Mimica said: "The sooner we act, the more lives we can save. This package of €165 million will support the urgent needs of South Sudanese people in the country and the region but also the millions of people at risk of famine in the Horn of Africa. With this additional support, the EU shows the way to other members of the international community to also respond urgently."

    Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides said: "The European Union is responding immediately to the needs arising from the severe famine in South Sudan and the dire droughts in Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya. With this new assistance, we will do our upmost to contain the effects of these extremely challenging circumstances in the Horn of Africa.''

    South Sudan crisis

    From this package of support, €100 million will be allocated to respond to the humanitarian crisis caused by the violent conflict in South Sudan. Out of this, €30 million will provide lifesaving assistance to vulnerable people in South Sudan. Assistance will offer protection to women and children at risk, or victims, of human rights abuses, as well as support to treat alarming levels of malnutrition, diseases and water and sanitation. The remaining amount of €70 million will support South Sudan's neighbouring countries, notably Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya and Sudan, to continue providing protection and addressing the needs of South Sudanese fleeing conflict and seeking shelter in their territories.

    Droughts in Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya

    The second part of the package, in the amount of €65 million, is planned to respond to the serious droughts in Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya. Changing climatic conditions and successive failed rains during the past three years are triggering a humanitarian crisis of huge proportions. The negative effects of the droughts are likely to intensify in 2017, as rains are projected to be below average during the next rain season. The situation is particularly dire in Somalia, where the number of people in need has increased drastically to 6.2 million, that is half the population, and where there is a real risk of famine later in 2017. A pre-famine alert has already been issued in February of this year.

    Background

    This new package will also scale up and strengthen over €400 million that the EU allocated in 2016 to address the humanitarian crises and the effects of El Niño in the region. It will also complement the €200 million which the EU approved in February this year to support the new Government of Somalia to continue transitioning out of fragility and building a resilience society.


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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: Nigeria

    Highlights

    • In February, for the third consecutive month, WFP assisted one million Nigerians in conflict-affected zones in the Northeast of the country through cash-based transfers, in-kind food assistance and specialised nutritious food distributions.

    • Given the current levels of food insecurity, significantly below-average crop production, disrupted livelihoods, and very high staple food prices, millions of people are likely to remain severely food insecure, particularly during the upcoming lean season.

    WFP Assistance

    Emergency Operation (EMOP) 200777

    WFP’s Regional EMOP addresses urgent food and nutrition needs of the most vulnerable people and communities in conflict-affected areas and displacement sites of Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria.

    WFP has adopted an agile response, using the most appropriate and context-specific types of assistance and delivery mechanisms to address needs. WFP uses either food- or cash-based transfers to support displaced people living in camps or with host communities, as well as vulnerable host populations.

    Through the Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM) – established jointly with UNICEF – which includes extensive use of helicopters and the pooling of logistics and telecommunications resources across the humanitarian community, WFP continues to reach remote areas that were previously inaccessible due to the fluctuating security situation.

    The prevention of malnutrition for children aged 6 to 59 months will remain integrated with cash or in-kind food assistance, and is being extended to pregnant and nursing women. In areas where population returns are possible, livelihood support interventions will be incorporated to contribute to early recovery and help reduce reliance on food assistance.

    Operational Updates

    • In February, WFP, both directly and through partnerships, reached 1,074,000 people in Northeast Nigeria.

    • A total of 836,000 people – most of them internally displaced, in camps or in host communities – benefited from in-kind food distributions across Borno and Yobe States.

    • A total of 227,000 children aged 6-59 months and pregnant and nursing women were assisted with specialised nutritious food, while a further 177,000 people were assisted through cash-based transfers.

    • Due to the multi-dimensional nature of the crisis, WFP has adopted a flexible and agile response, using the most appropriate and context-specific types of assistance and delivery mechanisms to address the needs of affected people.

    • Delivering in a highly risky and volatile context requires complementary actions to reach all those in need: WFP is increasing its footprint through 18 partnerships with national and international NGOs.

    • In light of the upcoming lean season, WFP is joining forces with FAO to provide emergency food assistance, agriculture and livelihoods support to save lives and protect and build livelihoods of internally displaced persons (IDPs), returnees and host communities in Borno and Yobe States


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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: Burkina Faso, Mali

    Highlights

    • Funding gaps are currently jeopardizing the implementation of all activities. Considering the current level of funding, three regions out of seven will be prioritized for the Protracted Relief and Recovery Operation (PRRO) and two provinces out of four will be targeted for Country Programme (CP).

    WFP Assistance

    The Country Programme focuses on improving primary education, promoting gender equity and helping the most vulnerable groups. The promotion of agricultural value chains supports home-grown school meals and local purchases.

    Support to primary education

    WFP provided daily school meals to 70,000 children in two districts of the Sahel region, Soum and Séno, and monthly take-home rations to 4,000 girls in the last two years. These rations entice parents to keep their daughters at school in a region where child marriage is common practice. WFP has contributed to the improvement of enrolment, attendance and retention in the region, particularly for girls.

    A pilot project to introduce dairy products in school meals succeeded in reaching 5,359 children so far. This project promotes home-grown school meals, income-generating activities for women and development of local dairies. It is being extended, in line with the findings and recommendations of the pilot project evaluation carried out by the Ministry of National Education and Literacy.
    Scaling up include two districts of Soum and Seno (Sahel region).

    Nutritional support to vulnerable groups

    WFP planned to provide food and nutritional support to 12,000 malnourished antiretroviral therapy (ART) clients as well as Supercereal Plus rations to 10,000 children in the Sahel region to prevent stunting.

    Promotion of agricultural value chains

    WFP promotes the development of agricultural value chains by prioritizing local purchases of food from Purchase for Progress (P4P) whenever possible.

    Food Assistance for Assets

    WFP supports the creation of small-scale agricultural assets and the strengthening of rural farmers’ livelihoods. Activities are focused on land restoration and water conservation. Community-Based Participatory Planning (CBPP) approach is used to assess vulnerable communities’ needs and develop action plans to enhance resilience over a 3-5 year period with communities themselves and local stakeholders. East, Sahel, Centre-North and North regions have been prioritized: action plans are completed, partnerships have been formed with NGOs and public technical services and activities started at the end of the rainy season, in October 2016 in the East region.

    Operational Updates

    • The Zero Hunger Review has been launched in Burkina Faso by the national lead convener, Mr. Pierre Claver DAMIBA and its team. This Review will be the basis of the Country Strategic Plan.

    • Scaling up of the yogurt project is still in progression, with 5,359 beneficiary schoolchildren in 28 schools. WFP works with two additional dairies in order to expand the project in the Séno district, in addition to Soum district. School meals and take-home rations for girls are pursued in 562 schools.

    • Food assistance to Malian refugees and nutrition activities are continuing. Nevertheless, nutrition activities are implemented on a reduced scale due to the lack of funding. Blanket feeding activities are pursued for 2,500 children in the East region. Assistance to malnourished antiretroviral therapy (ART) clients was only carried out in December during the last quarter because of funding shortfalls.

    • Food assistance for assets activities have been launched in the East region. They will be progressively expanded and additional households will be enrolled in the East as well as the Centre-North, the North and the Sahel regions.


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    Source: Government of the Netherlands
    Country: Netherlands, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, Yemen

    The government has responded to the appeal made by UN Secretary-General António Guterres to prevent millions of people from dying of starvation in Yemen, North East Nigeria, Somalia and South Sudan. ‘The UN is warning of complete catastrophe in South Sudan alone, with women and children hiding in dangerous swamps and reduced to eating the roots of swamp plants to survive,’ said development minister Lilianne Ploumen. ‘In Yemen, one child dies every 10 minutes due to violence, hunger and lack of medical assistance. In Somalia, families are walking hundreds of kilometres in the burning sun to find water. And in Nigeria, severe malnutrition is threatening the lives of half a million children.’

    In addition to existing pledges, the government is releasing an extra €2 million in emergency aid for the regions affected, where society has effectively collapsed. Farmers are unable to work their land, causing drastic food shortages. This is sometimes due to climate change, such as El Niño, and sometimes due to war. Or a combination of the two. ‘It is terrible to see leaders choosing violence instead of dialogue, over the backs of innocent people,’ Ms Ploumen added.

    The government’s emergency aid will be channelled through Giro555, the Dutch aid agencies coalition, which has experience of working in crisis areas. Earlier this week Giro555 launched an appeal for individual donations. ‘More than 25 million people urgently need food, and now,’ said Ms Ploumen. ‘There is a lot to do, and we need to do it quickly. Governments and the public need to join forces to make it happen.’ Since the end of 2016, the Dutch government has pledged more than €33 million in emergency aid for the 4 regions.


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    Source: UN Human Rights Council
    Country: Mali

    Conseil des droits de l’homme
    Trente-quatrième session
    27 février-24 mars 2017
    Point 10 de l’ordre du jour

    Assistance technique et renforcement des capacités

    Rapport de l’Expert indépendant sur la situation des droits de l’homme au Mali

    Note du Secrétariat

    Le Secrétariat a l’honneur de transmettre au Conseil des droits de l’homme le rapport de l’Expert indépendant sur la situation des droits de l’homme au Mali, Suliman Baldo, qui couvre la période du 1er avril au 30 novembre 2016. Le rapport se fonde sur les informations mises à la disposition de l’Expert indépendant lors de sa septième visite au Mali du 7 au 16 novembre 2016 par le Gouvernement malien, la Mission multidimensionnelle intégrée des Nations Unies pour la stabilisation au Mali ainsi que d’autres sources, notamment les organisations de la société civile.

    **I. Introduction **

    1. Le présent rapport est soumis conformément à la résolution 31/28 du Conseil des droits de l’homme, adoptée le 24 mars 2016, dans laquelle le Conseil a prorogé d’un an le mandat de l’Expert indépendant sur la situation des droits de l’homme au Mali en vue d’aider le Gouvernement malien dans ses actions de promotion et de protection des droits de l’homme et lui a demandé de présenter un rapport au Conseil à sa trente-quatrième session.

    2. Dans le présent rapport, qui couvre la période du 1er avril au 30 novembre 2016, l’Expert indépendant sur la situation des droits de l’homme au Mali, Suliman Baldo, rend compte de sa septième visite au Mali, du 7 au 16 novembre 2016. Il se fonde sur des informations collectées auprès des autorités gouvernementales, des organismes des Nations Unies opérant dans le pays, des associations nationales et internationales travaillant sur les questions humanitaires et des droits de l’homme, ainsi que sur les témoignages d’associations et de familles de victimes de violations graves des droits de l’homme et du droit international humanitaire.

    3. L’Expert indépendant tient à remercier le Gouvernement malien pour avoir facilité son séjour dans le pays et pour lui avoir accordé l’accès à tous les responsables nationaux et locaux qu’il a demandé à rencontrer. Lors de sa septième visite, comme lors des précédentes, l’Expert indépendant a rencontré des officiels de haut rang, parmi lesquels le Ministre de la justice et des droits de l’homme, garde des Sceaux, le Ministre de la défense et des anciens combattants et la Ministre de la promotion de la femme, de la famille et de l’enfant.

    4. L’Expert indépendant a également rencontré les membres de la Commission vérité, justice et réconciliation et la Présidente de la nouvelle Commission nationale des droits de l’homme. Il s’est rendu à Tombouctou et à Goundam où il a rencontré les autorités civiles et les associations de victimes.

    5. L’Expert indépendant s’est entretenu avec des représentants de la société civile, des associations de victimes du nord du Mali et une association de jeunes, ainsi qu’avec des représentants de la Plateforme et de la Coordination des mouvements de l’Azawad (CMA), du corps diplomatique et des organismes des Nations Unies.

    6. L’Expert indépendant tient à remercier le Représentant spécial du Secrétaire général pour le Mali et chef de la Mission multidimensionnelle intégrée des Nations Unies pour la stabilisation au Mali (MINUSMA), Mahamat Annadif, le Représentant spécial adjoint du Secrétaire général pour les affaires politiques, Koen Davidse, ainsi que le personnel de la Division des droits de l’homme et de la protection (DDHP) de la MINUSMA. L’appui technique et logistique du système des Nations Unies au Mali était indispensable pour la facilitation et le succès de la septième visite de l’Expert indépendant.


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    Source: UN Office of the SRSG for Children and Armed Conflict
    Country: Mali

    New York – The Coordination des Mouvements de l’Azawad (CMA), a coalition of armed movements signatory of the Algiers Peace Accord, which includes the listed Mouvement National de Libération de l’Azawad (MNLA), signed an Action Plan with the United Nations to end and prevent the recruitment and use, sexual violence and all other grave violations against children.

    Earlier today, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, Leila Zerrougui, signed the Action Plan in New York as a witness.

    “I am pleased to see the CMA take the initiative of signing an Action Plan, which is also binding for all entities under its umbrella,” said Leila Zerrougui. “It is a welcome development because it will provide a framework to end violations attributed to armed groups and strengthen the protection of children in Mali.”

    As required by UN Security Council resolutions on children and armed conflict*, the Action Plan includes concrete measures to end and prevent the recruitment, use and association of all children under 18 as well as actions to prevent rape, other forms of sexual violence and all grave violations against children. The agreement is binding for all members of the CMA, including the MNLA, a party listed in the annual report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict for the violations of recruitment and use and sexual violence against children.

    “Through the Action Plan, the CMA commits to ensure the release and handover to child protection actors of all children present in the ranks of its members,” said Leila Zerrougui. “Signing an Action Plan is the beginning of a process and I look forward to its full implementation. I count on the support of the Government to facilitate this process in the best interest of the children of Mali.”

    Note to editors:

    *UN Security Council resolutions 1539 (2004), 1612 (2005), 1882 (2009), 1998 (2011) and 2225 (2015) on Children and Armed Conflict established measures and tools to end grave violations against children, through the creation of a monitoring and reporting mechanism, and the development of Action Plans to end violations by parties listed in the annexes of the Secretary-General’s annual report on children and armed conflict.

    For additional information, please contact:

    Stephanie Tremblay, Communications Officer, Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, +1-212-963-8285 (office), +1-917-288 5791 (mobile), tremblay@un.org


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