The latest food security and nutrition analysis from the FAO-managed Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit (FSNAU) and the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET) issued on 2 February 2017 revealed that the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance has increased from 5 million in September 2016 to 6.2 million between February and June 2017. That is more than half the population. The current caseload of 185,000 of severely malnourished children will likely increase over the coming months to 270,000 children in need of urgent treatment. Some 30,000 children have already dropped out of school in drought-affected areas only in Puntland and Somaliland.
The FSNAU/FEWSNET results reveal a drastic increase in the number of people experiencing “crisis” and “emergency” levels of food insecurity from 1.1 million in the previous six months, to a projected 2.9 million between February and June 2017. Deyr 2016 harvests represented the second lowest cereal production since 1995, further reducing food availability and access following a poor Gu 2016 season. Cereal prices have increased since October, and are expected to continue to climb through mid-2017. The situation for children is especially grave. The GAM prevalence is above the critical (< 15 per cent) threshold in 13 out of 27 rural and displaced groups. There are more than 3.2 million people in urgent need of WASH assistance, but it is estimated that the number will rise to 4.5 million. (OCHA, 17 Feb 2017)
With famine declared in parts of South Sudan, the hunger crisis in Somalia is on the cusp of becoming a famine, and Kenya experiencing severe drought, the lives of 700,000 children who are suffering severe acute malnutrition are now in the balance.
The situation in Somalia is deteriorating quickly as well, with acute levels of food insecurity increasing each day. World Vision is deeply concerned that hundreds of children could die if they do not get the nutritious food supplements they urgently need, as well as water and food.
Ethiopia - As severe food insecurity continues to rise due to the worsening drought, thousands of Somalis are being forced to leave their homes in search of water, food and pasture. The Government of Ethiopia and the humanitarian community are planning for the potential arrival of 50,000 Somalis in the border regions of Ethiopia. These individuals will require urgent humanitarian assistance.
Menaced by Al Shabab militants and a worsening drought, thousands of Somalis are abandoning the land to seek refuge in neighbouring Ethiopia.
By: Diana Diaz | 24 March 2017
Drought crisis in Somalia
Drought conditions are deepening in the north, and have expanded to southern and central regions. The large scale failure of the Deyr rains (October to November 2016) and consequent drought conditions have severely affected crop production and reduced pasto-ral resources to support livestock.
River levels are far below average, limiting access to water for livestock and crop production. Pasture and water resources are very limited, especially in the pastoral regions of central and northeastern Somalia.
NAIROBI — The Kenyan government says it will open the border with Somalia to boost trade and allow the flow of people between the two countries. Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta also pledged to help Somalia in the fight against al-Shabab militants and support and train government workers. His remarks followed a meeting he had in Nairobi with his Somali counterpart, Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed.
After a closed door meeting that lasted more than three hours, the two heads of state addressed the media in a display of friendship.
President Kenyatta discussed the border issue.
(Nairobi, March 24, 2017): The membership of the Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat (ReDSS), Somalia NGO Consortium and the Inter-agency Working Group (IAWG) welcome the Special Summit of the IGAD Heads of State on Durable Solutions for Somali refugees taking place on the 25th March, 2017 in Nairobi, Kenya. This Summit and its expected Comprehensive Plan of Action is convened at a time when almost one million Somalis refugees are displaced within the East and Horn of Africa region.
We are on the precipice of another humanitarian crisis. The famine that is raging in Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, and Yemen is threatening the lives of millions of people. The crisis is urgent, complex and vast. Without swift action, alarming food shortages in Ethiopia, Chad, Kenya, Uganda, and Niger, could also spiral into crisis.
7905TH MEETING (AM)
Newly Elected President Urges Council to Help His Country Fend Off Looming Famine
Unanimously adopting resolution 2346 (2017) today, the Security Council extended the mandate of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) until 16 June.
MICHAEL KEATING SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE OF THE SECRETARY-GENERAL FOR SOMALIA
BRIEFING TO THE SECURITY COUNCIL ON SOMALIA
23 MARCH 2017
As the Secretary-General said on his first field visit since taking office, Somalia is experiencing a moment of both tragedy and hope.
Tragedy, because a drought-induced humanitarian crisis is now engulfing the country, with imminent risk of famine.
Severe drought has taken hold in parts of the Horn of Africa (HoA) region following a long dry spell. Some affected areas in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia were yet to recover from the 2015-16 El Niño- drought when rains failed again. 16.8 million people across the region face food and water shortages and it is predicted that the next rainy season, from March to May, will again disappoint. 10.7 million people need urgent food assistance.
At least 25 people have died of starvation in the self-declared republic of Somaliland as the Horn of Africa grapples with an increasingly severe drought.
“The drought situation is at its most dangerous level. Eighty percent of the livestock have gone and we are struggling with saving people, who have started dying. So far, we have recorded 25 deaths, most of them children who starved to death," said Ahmed Abdi Salay, the governor of Somaliland's northwest Sanag region.
SOMALIA/Baidoa District: While drought is ravaging the countryside, a rural community is surviving with the help of solar powered irrigation and agricultural resilience training. As residents of central and southern regions are fleeing drought, Isak Ibrahim stays put in his home village Bonkai.
Although crops have failed across the country due to two successive seasons of drought, locals are still harvesting vegetables and fruits in the fields surrounding the southern village.
Somalia is in the grip of an intense drought, induced by consecutive seasons of poor rainfall. The country is on the brink of a famine, just six years after another famine led to the loss of a quarter of a million lives. In the worst-affected areas, inadequate rainfall and lack of water have wiped out crops and killed livestock, leaving half the population (6.2 million people) in need of humanitarian assistance. Nearly 3 million of these people cannot meet their daily food requirements.
Water is precious everywhere, but there are few places on Earth where water is as precious as in Somalia right now.
The Horn of Africa region is fighting a severe drought that threatens thousands of lives. It's a reminder during this year's World Water Day how valuable water is for those without it.
Pastoralist families across Somalia are uprooting their lives and moving in search of water that their animals – goats, sheep and camels - can drink before dying of thirst. Somali families that grow crops using irrigation now stare at dry rivers and empty farmlands.
UNICEF has revised its humanitarian strategy for 2017 to focus on immediate life-saving measures needed to advert famine. UNICEF has revised its Humanitarian Action for Children (HAC) requirements for Somalia from US$66.1 million to US$147.9 million to meet the increased humanitarian needs of children due to the rapidly deteriorating drought situation which is now affecting most of the country.
A persistent drought has left nearly 23 million people across the Horn of Africa without enough to eat. In South Sudan, hundreds of thousands are trying to survive famine. Nearly half the country—or 4.9 million people—are now going hungry. That number will grow when the “lean season” arrives in July, just before harvest and as food reserves have been exhausted.
The world’s last declared famine, which lasted from 2010 to 2012 in Somalia, resulted in 260,000 deaths.
The humanitarian situation is rapidly deteriorating in Somalia, where two consecutive seasons of poor rainfall have led to massive drought. Hundreds of thousands of people have been uprooted from their homes, walking long distances to find food, water and other essentials. United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has warned that Somalia is at risk of famine, putting millions of lives at stake.
UNSOM Police Commissioner Christoph Buik and the German Deputy Ambassador to Somalia Markus Bollmohr visited the disputed city of Gaalkacyo on 21 March to assess the implementation of a ceasefire agreement concluded by the President of Puntland state Abdiweli Mohamed Ali “Gaas” and the then President of Galmudug state Abdikarim Hussein Guled in November of last year.
Drought assistance to host community