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Humanitarian Crises in Southern and Eastern Africa

In early 2017, famine was declared in parts of South Sudan, with almost five million people classified as severely food insecure, while warnings of possible famine were issued for other countries in the Horn of Africa. By February the number of severely food-insecure people across the greater Horn of Africa region had increased to 22.9 million and this could rise even further. (OCHA, 24 Feb 2017)

WFP has classified the drought crisis in the Horn of Africa as a Level 2 Emergency. Some 2.9 million people in Somalia and 5.6 million people in Ethiopia are categorised as being in either crisis or emergency IPC levels 3 and 4, and require urgent humanitarian assistance. In Kenya, 2.6 million people also require emergency food assistance, of whom 2.2 million are in IPC Phase 3.

The Somali and Kenyan governments have declared the drought situation a “national disaster” and appealed to the international community to support the response efforts. In Somalia, WFP scaled up its emergency response in February, reaching nearly 1 million people through general distributions, nutrition interventions and school meals programme. (WFP, 15 Mar 2017)

At the other end of the continent, some countries in southern Africa were hit by floods and an infestation of army worm, further compounding the food insecurity experienced in the region as a consequence of the El-Niño phenomenon that struck in 2015-16.

According to WFP, the nutrition situation deteriorated in the seven most severely drought-affected countries - Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe - in the latter half of 2016, with several countries recording wasting levels above 5 percent. Pockets of very high acute malnutrition are still prevalent in Zimbabwe and Madagascar (WFP, 21 Feb 2017)

Madagascar was also hit by a tropical cyclone in March 2017, leaving more than 110,000 people displaced.

All Updates on Humanitarian Crises in Southern and Eastern Africa

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25 Jul 2017 description
report UN News Service

24 juillet 2017 – En déplacement ce weekend à Djibouti, les chefs de trois agences des Nations Unies ont promis d'aider ce pays à atteindre les Objectifs de développement durable (ODD), en mettant notamment l'accent sur la santé et la lutte contre la malnutrition.

24 Jul 2017 description
report UN Children's Fund


• Since the beginning of January 2017, the number of malaria cases has reached over 4.2 million people (with 1,891 deaths); UNICEF contributed to the National Malaria Response Plan with the provision of malaria drugs and diagnostic kits, and community mobilisation activities for an amount of about US$ 3.6 million.

24 Jul 2017 description
report World Bank

A pioneering soil carbon project helps to double maize production in areas of Kenya, improving farmers’ livelihoods and agricultural practices.

Eight years ago, extended droughts and unpredictable rainy seasons in the Nyanza and Western provinces of Kenya were destroying the crops of smallholder farmers, and with them, farmers’ ability to earn an income and provide food for their families. Despite their best efforts, farmers lacked the know-how to adapt to, and even prosper in a changing environment.

24 Jul 2017 description

July 24, 2017

Latest survey results show that new HIV infections were nearly halved and HIV viral load suppression has doubled in Swaziland since 2011.

24 Jul 2017 description
report The Guardian

South Sudan has the largest number of child soldiers in Africa. Most are still fighting, but efforts are being made to disarm and reintegrate them into society

David Zelu, not yet 16 years old, looks up, smiles, and stretches his arms to the sky where the sun is finally breaking through the clouds. The rain that has hammered on the wooden roof of the small hut he shares with four other teenagers has passed. Crows wheel overhead, and small thin children jump in puddles.

24 Jul 2017 description


The International Organization for Migration (IOM) manages the common pipeline for the Shelter and NFI Cluster by procuring, transporting and storing stocks throughout South Sudan. Supplies are accessible to Cluster partners ensuring sectorial coverage of the current and future needs more efficiently.

24 Jul 2017 description


On a long winding road in Malakal town, lined mostly with county government offices and ministry headquarters, Eliza Wanykow Chan opens her teashop.

It is 6 o’clock in the morning. The town is just coming to life.

In the market just a few meters away, women begin to spread their wares - mostly vegetables and fish. The smell of fresh bread baking in ovens and zalabia (tea scones) frying, merges with that of the tea Eliza has started brewing for her customers who are mostly government officials on their way to work.

24 Jul 2017 description


This weekly bulletin focuses on selected acute public health emergencies occurring in the WHO African Region. WHO AFRO is currently monitoring 42 events. This week, two new events have been reported: outbreaks of cholera in Burundi and CrimeanCongo haemorrhagic fever in Senegal. This week’s edition also covers key ongoing events in the region, including the:

• Grade 3 humanitarian crises in South Sudan;

• Grade 2 outbreaks of necrotizing cellulitis/fasciitis in Sao Tome and Principe, and cholera in Tanzania;

24 Jul 2017 description

This report presents qualitative research conducted by the IOM in Madagascar in December 2016 to assess the effect of drought on migration in the Grand Sud; whether there has been an increase in outmigration during the current humanitarian crisis (since 2013); and the key sectors of intervention that affect migration in the Grand Sud, and in turn, how migration affects these sectors.

24 Jul 2017 description


  • 9,437 South Sudanese refugees arrived in Uganda between the 5 th and 18th of July at an average daily rate of 674. The number of South Sudanese refugees in Uganda now stands at 990,761 and is expected to reach one million within the next few weeks if current arrival rate continues.

24 Jul 2017 description

July 14, 2017 - The creation of an emergency hub in Nairobi by World Health organization has been well received by the Kenyan government and partners.

The initiative was recently introduced in Nairobi by Dr Ibrahima-Soce Fall, the WHO AFRO director for Emergencies when he met the Kenyan Cabinet Secretary for health Dr Cleopa Mailu, MOH officials and various partners. These included CDC, Office for coordination of Humanitarian affairs (OCHA), World Bank, UNICEF, USAID, and UNHCR, International Federation for the Red Cross and Red Crescent and GIZ.

24 Jul 2017 description

Lusaka - 21 July 2017- Following the completion of phase one of the UNITAID/PSI HIV Self- Testing Africa (STAR) project (2015-2017), Zambia conducted a dissemination meeting to share lessons learnt from implementing the project. This pilot study is being implemented by a consortium led by Population Services International (PSI) in Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe in two phases and it will last up to three years from August 2017.

24 Jul 2017 description

Executive summary

Understanding labour migration in the East African Community

24 Jul 2017 description


Internally displaced people seeking sanctuary at a Catholic church in Rimenze are grateful to UN peacekeepers for their willingness to stay with them overnight in what they describe as “hell on earth”.

The community took refuge at the local church in Western Equatoria after fighting erupted in January. They say members of their families were killed by armed forces and their homes were looted and burnt to the ground.

24 Jul 2017 description


Religious and political leaders are being urged to lead a peace and reconciliation campaign in the Lakes region of South Sudan, which has been the scene of ongoing intercommunal conflict driven by cattle-raiding.

At a conflict transformation workshop hosted by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), the Mission encouraged political and religious leaders to work together as advocates for peace and reconciliation across the region.

24 Jul 2017 description

Peace and security issues took greater precedence at the recent bi-annual AU summit in Addis Ababa than in previous years. The crises in Burundi, South Sudan and Somalia were among the issues discussed, but no major decisions were taken by the heads of state and government.