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
Syria: The military offensive in Aleppo governorate has displaced more than 40,000 people since late January, and the number of displaced is reported to be increasing. There is concern that a siege of opposition-held areas of Aleppo city is imminent. An estimated 20,000 newly displaced Syrians are stuck at the Bab al Salam crossing along the Syria–Turkey border, as Turkey has denied them entry into Turkish territory.
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.
The Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Food Security Policy recently released its annual report covering research and activities progress over the past year. The overall goal of the FSP program is to promote inclusive agricultural productivity growth, improved nutritional outcomes, and enhanced livelihood resilience for men and women through improved policy environments. The goal will be achieved by fostering credible, inclusive, transparent and sustainable policy processes at country and regional levels and filling critical policy evidence gaps.
$100 million has been approved from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) during the first 2016 underfunded emergencies allocation round to assist 4.5 million people in nine silent and severely underfunded crises. The funds will sustain life-saving relief in emergencies where levels of risk and vulnerability are alarmingly high, but available resources for humanitarian response are critically low.
(Addis-Abeba/New York, 29 janvier 2016) Aujourd’hui, le Secrétaire général des Nations Unies Ban Ki-moon a débloqué 100 millions de dollars du Fonds central de l’ONU pour les interventions d’urgence (CERF) en faveur d’opérations humanitaires qui manquent cruellement de fonds dans le cadre de neuf situations d’urgence négligées.
(Addis Ababa/New York, 29 January 2016) - United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today released US$100 million from the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) for severely underfunded aid operations in nine neglected emergencies. The funds will enable life-saving help for millions of people forced from their homes in Central and Eastern Africa, those affected by conflict and food insecurity in Libya and Mali, and the most vulnerable and at risk of malnutrition in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
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.
PROJECTED FOOD ASSISTANCE NEEDS FOR JULY 2016*
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.
By Ryan Cummings
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.
PROJECTED FOOD ASSISTANCE NEEDS FOR JUNE 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
Featured in this issue:
Refl ections on our visit to Northern Nigeria
Updates from our partners in Nigeria, Sudan,
South Sudan, Uganda, India, Timor-Leste and Burma
News from HART
Refl ection and Celebration
At HART, we love to celebrate the courage, commitment and achievements of our partners who dedicate themselves to serving their communities in very challenging situations. They truly represent the spirit of Christmas – ‘love in action’.
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
7572e séance – matin
Le regain de violences en République centrafricaine, à l’origine de vagues de personnes déplacées et de violations des droits de l’homme, est l’un des faits les plus marquants des six derniers mois en Afrique centrale, une région déjà confrontée à des tensions politiques, a déclaré le Représentant spécial du Secrétaire général pour cette sous-région, M. Abdoulaye Bathily.