Grave concerns persist for some 20 million people in the Sahel. Recurrent conflict, erratic weather patterns, epidemics and other shocks continue to weaken the resilience of households across a region still suffering chronic levels of food insecurity and malnutrition.
An estimated 20.4 million people remain food insecure at the start of 2015. At least 2.6 million people have already crossed the crisis threshold, 70 percent of whom are in Niger, Nigeria, Mali and Chad where insecurity and poverty compound food insecurity.
Epidemics continue to demand urgent attention in 2015. Besides cholera, meningitis, Lassa and yellow fever, more recently, Ebola has been posing a serious threat to the Sahel region and has already impacted Mali, Nigeria, and Mali directly.
Beyond the chronic threats of food insecurity, malnutrition and epidemics, violent conflict in and around the Sahel region has led to a surge in population displacement. The region begins 2015 with some 2.8 million people displaced; over a million more than in early 2014. With escalating conflict in northeast Nigeria, an estimated one million people have been internally displaced. Some 150,000 Nigerian refugees have fled to neighbouring Niger, Chad and Cameroon. The volatile security situation in northern Mali continues to have a devastating impact on civilians, hampering the return of refugees, affecting markets and preventing the full restoration of basic services. Some 133,000 Malian refugees remain in Mauritania, Niger and Burkina Faso and more than 80,000 Malians remain internally displaced. As in Nigeria, high levels of insecurity in northern Mali also greatly impact the ability of humanitarians to access those in need. (Sahel: A call for humanitarian aid, 12 Feb 2015)
Due to the ongoing crisis in the Lake Chad Basin, Chad is now the seventh largest refugee-hosting country in the world with over 750,000 displaced persons, the majority of whom are refugees or Chadian returnees who fled from the Central African Republic, Libya, Nigeria, and Sudan. At the end of August, the Regional Humanitarian Coordinator for the Sahel called on the international community to ramp up its support in response to the multi-faceted humanitarian challenges affecting the country. (OCHA, 27 Aug 2015)
On 9 December 2015, United Nations agencies and partners launched the Sahel humanitarian appeal for 2016. The regional plan calls for US$1.98 billion to provide vital assistance to millions of people affected by crises in nine countries across Africa’s Sahel region. (OCHA, 9 Dec 2015)
As of 5 Jan 2016, the Strategic Response Plan for the Sahel was 44% funded. (OCHA, 15 Jan 2016)
Appeals & Funding
- Sahel Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) 2016 EN/FR
- Humanitarian Needs Overview EN/FR
- 2014-2016 Strategic Response Plans: Sahel Region EN/FR; Burkina Faso; Cameroon; Chad; Gambia; Mali; Mauritania; Niger; Nigeria; Senegal
Snapshot 27 January – 2 February 2016
Boko Haram in Nigeria, Cameroon, and Chad: 86 people were killed and 62 injured, with 15 missing after Boko Haram set fire to Dalori, near Maiduguri in Borno state. The past week also saw attacks in Chibok that left 13 dead and 30 injured. 40 civilians were reported dead after Cameroonian troops announced they were carrying out a search for BH militants in the area. In Cameroon, 52 people were killed in BH attacks in January. In Chad, two suicide bombings in Lac region left three dead and 56 wounded.
The month saw an intensification of Yemen’s war, amid heightened regional rivalries between Saudi Arabia and Iran complicating prospects for peace. Political tensions increased in Haiti, Guinea-Bissau and Moldova, where protests over endemic corruption and a lack of confidence in the government could escalate. In Africa, Boko Haram’s deadly attacks increased in northern Cameroon, and Burkina Faso was hit by an unprecedented terror attack.
Burundi: As the security situation continues to deteriorate, the UN Security Council has expressed concern over possible mass atrocities and ethnic violence. Clashes continues in several areas of the country. Burundian refugees in DRC expressed fears over possible cross-border attacks by government forces.
Nigeria: An outbreak of Lassa viral haemorrhagic fever was announced in Nigeria on 8 January. At least 140 suspected cases and 30 confirmed cases, including 53 deaths, have been reported in 14 states. The indicated case fatality rate stands at 37.9%.
Gambia: Almost 182,000 people (9% of the population) are severely food insecure after erratic rains caused drought and crop failure. Most affected regions are Upper River, West Coast, and Northern Bank.
DRC: Violence between Hutu and Nande, in Miriki, Lubero, Nord-Kivu, allegedly over land, has left 17 dead and over 20,000 displaced. The displaced urgently need food and drinking water.
Iraq: In Ramadi and Hawija, Islamic State has stalled civilians’ attempts to escape conflict zones and persecution. People from Hawija must trek for two days across mountainous terrain to reach safety: 60 people were reported to have died on the journey between November 2015 and January 2016.
Zimbabwe: A poor 2014/2015 harvest coupled with delayed onset of rains this cropping season have left 1.5 million people facing food insecurity from January through March 2016. Government maize stocks are dangerously low and humanitarian food assistance plans underfunded. Over 850,000 people urgently require assistance.
December 2015 – Trends
- Deteriorated situations
Afghanistan, Burundi, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Niger
- Improved situations
January 2016 – Watchlist
- Conflict risk alerts
- Conflict resolution opportunities
Snapshot 16–22 December 2015
Cameroon: 2.9 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance. 2.4 million are in need of protection assistance, predominantly in the Far North Region. The government has reportedly urged men to join self-defence groups in the northern areas affected by Boko Haram. The same reports suggest the government has made provisions in its 2016 budget to support the self-defence groups.
Snapshot 9–15 December 2015
Snapshot 2-8 December 2015
Jordan: 11,400 Syrian asylum seekers are currently stranded at the border with Jordan, after a recent surge in violence has driven new displacement, doubling the number at the border since October. They face urgent humanitarian and protection needs. The Jordanian Government has increasingly restricted movement across the border since 2013.
Violent conflicts, terrorism, long-standing repressive regimes, chronic poverty and inequality have driven an unprecedented number of refugees and migrants to Europe. Those making the journey are assisted by an increasingly violent and opportunistic smuggling industry. Sustainable profits made by this industry have allowed transnational networks to develop where they previously did not exist, with serious implications for human security and state stability.
Développement d’une résurgence dans l’ouest de la Mauritanie
Outbreak develops in western Mauritania
November 2015 – Trends
Bangladesh, France, Kosovo, Lebanon, Nepal, Syria, Turkey, Venezuela
Burkina Faso, Myanmar
December 2015 – Watchlist
Conflict risk alerts
- Conflict resolution opportunities
Snapshot 25 November–1 December 2015
Cameroon: New data indicate that 158,316 people are internally displaced – this is 65,000 more than the previous estimate. The vast majority have been displaced by Boko Haram-related violence, with fewer than 15% displaced by flooding and other natural disasters. Movement stays within Far North region, and Logone-et-Chari hosts around 60% of all IDPs.
Somalia: Flooding has affected 132,000 people and displaced an estimated 60,000 as low-lying areas of Mogadishu have now been inundated, as well as areas of Middle Shabelle and Lower Juba. Main supply roads are impassable and some airstrips unusable The middle and lower reaches of the Shabelle River remain at high risk of flooding.
Globally, millions of vulnerable households are at risk of increased hunger and poverty due to droughts and floods as a result of a climatic occurrence: El Niño. This phenomenon is not an individual weather event but a climate pattern which occurs every two to seven years and lasts 9-12 months. No two El Niño events are ever the same and it is thought that this particular occurrence could be the most powerful on record. The strongest El Niño in 1997/1998 killed some 21,000 people and caused damage to infrastructure worth US$ 36 billion.
This bulletin examines trends in staple food and fuel prices, the cost of the basic food basket and consumer price indices for 70 countries in the third quarter of 2015 (July to September).1 The maps on pages 6–7 disaggregate the impact analysis to sub-national level.
• FAO’s global cereal price index still continued to fall in Q3-2015, down 12.7 percent year-on-year and is now at 2010 levels.