Campaigning for municipal elections, which is to be held on 31 July, started last week without incident.
The SADC Commission of Enquiry established by the Double Troika Summit is expected to arrive in Lesotho on 20 July 2015.
Prospects for world cereal production in 2015 remain favourable, despite recent adverse weather conditions in some regions and continuing concerns over El Niño, with the global cereal supply and demand outlook for 2015/16 pointing to generally stable conditions.
Tracking food security trends in vulnerable countries
The Global Food Security Update provides a quarterly overview of key food security trends in vulnerable countries. Information is provided by WFP VAM field teams and partners.
• Conflict in Yemen is causing increasing food insecurity.
As of June, at least 6 million people are facing Emergency (IPC Phase 4) food insecurity. Millions more could easily fall into the emergency conditions unless a political solution is found quickly.
The Humanitarian Compendium provides a comprehensive overview of IOM humanitarian projects for 2014 in coordination with other humanitarian partners and agencies.
Syria: Violence continues, with opposition infighting in the northwest and heavy clashes across large parts of the country, including Rural Damascus. While several military ceasefires have allowed some access to besieged areas, insecurity continues to interrupt aid distribution, and access to Ar-Raqqa, Deir-ez-Zor and areas around the capital remains highly constrained. To date, over nine million people are estimated to have been displaced by the crisis, at least 2.5 million of whom have crossed into neighbouring countries.
Syria: Violence is ongoing across the country, with rebel infighting in the northwest and renewed clashes in parts of Damascus. While several military ceasefires have allowed some access in besieged areas, insecurity continues to interrupt aid distribution, and access remains highly constrained from Damascus to Rural Aleppo, where 1.25 million people are estimated to be in need of food assistance. To date, over 9 million people have been displaced by the crisis, 2.5 million of whom have crossed into neighbouring countries.
Syria: Violence is ongoing across the country, with further government bombardments in the southeastern governorates of Damascus and Dara’a. To date, an estimated 2.5 million people have crossed into neighbouring countries, while 6.5 million are now internally displaced. In a separate development, the UN Security Council adopted a non-binding resolution to boost humanitarian access to Syria as increasing security incidents at the Turkish border threaten to compromise access to the north of the country.
Towards the end of the fourth quarter, CERF and its humanitarian partners were challenged by a series of large, complex crises, including three system-wide level-three (L3) emergencies. These crises, in countries including the Central African Republic (CAR), the Philippines, Syria and Yemen, have affected 35 million people who urgently needed emergency relief, protection and basic services. CERF was there to provide a lifeline.
Member States and the private sector contributed $474 million to CERF for 2013—the highest-ever annual total. An additional $6.7 million was pledged and remains outstanding.
CERF received more than $507 million in contributions during 2013, including payments for 2012 and early funding for 2014. See table on the right for more details.
Snapshot 3 - 10 December
In Syria, the conflict has been going on for over 1,000 days, and to date, the war has displaced 6.5 million people internally and forced 2.3 million to cross into neighbouring countries. Meanwhile, Washington indicated that it has been in talks with Islamist opposition factions non-linked to Al-Qaeda, in order to push for a negotiated settlement to the crisis.
In Syria, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that an estimated 126,000 people have died during the conflict, more than a third of them civilians. Meanwhile, Turkey and Iran, which support opposing sides within the crisis, jointly called for a ceasefire before the beginning of the peace talks, set for 22 January in Geneva.
In Syria, government forces fully control the town of Qara after almost a week of heavy fighting which caused over 15,000 Syrian refugees to cross into Lebanon. Meanwhile, the UN stated that it has brokered an agreement allowing for the Government of Syria and opposition negotiators to meet for peace talks in Geneva on January 22. The opposition reaffirmed the conditions of its participation: the release of prisoners, humanitarian assistance for besieged towns, and the exclusion of President Assad from the new transitional government.
Snapshot 12 – 19 November
Snapshot 5 – 12 November
In Syria, the opposition agreed to participate in international peace talks in Geneva under the condition that President al-Assad is excluded from any transitional government, which constitutes a major obstacle to the initiation of the process as the Government stated it will not enter discussion if this demand is upheld. The peace dialogue has been repeatedly postponed and will not go ahead as planned in November. To date, the overall number of Syrian refugees is over 2.2 million and the number of people in need in the country stands at 9.3 million.
(Pretoria, 08 November 2013): A groundbreaking study into the threats likely to confront southern African communities over the next decade has been released. Titled Humanitarian Trends in Southern Africa: Challenges and Opportunities, the study identifies regional and global factors that may impact the lives and livelihoods of southern Africans and, as importantly, the available capacities to address these challenges.
Snapshot 29 October – 5 November
In Syria, the opposition remains divided over their participation to proposed peace talks in Geneva, with a decision being expected by 9 November. In Damascus, the Government repeated that it will not enter discussions if President al-Assad is forced to resign. While the overall number of Syrian refugees went over 2.2 million, revised estimates indicated that the number of people in need in Syria has increased from 6.8 million in April to 9.3 million in late October. An estimated 6.5 million are internally displaced.
In Syria, fighting has intensified in October with the Government gaining control of strategic areas around Damascus and south of Aleppo. Meanwhile, while the number of Syrian refugees has reached almost 2.2 million people, parties to the conflict and international actors are increasingly focused on the Geneva II conference scheduled to take place in November after having been postponed several times.