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30 Dec 2009 description
report Inter Press Service

By Susan Anyangu-Amu

NAIROBI, Dec 30 (IPS) - The European Commission Humanitarian Aid Department (ECHO) has raised a red flag over the worsening food security situation in the Horn of Africa.

Karel De Gucht, European Commissioner in charge of development and humanitarian aid, attributes the disastrous situation to the terrible potential of climate change.

"Large parts of the Horn of Africa have had less than 75 percent of normal rainfall this year, having already endured a series of severe droughts.

17 Dec 2009 description


Brussels, 17 December 2009 - The European Commission is providing €50 million in humanitarian aid to vulnerable drought-affected people in Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda. The funds are channelled through the Humanitarian Aid department (ECHO) under the responsibility of Commissioner Karel De Gucht.

"We face a disastrous situation in the Horn of Africa that demonstrates the terrible potential of climate change.

16 Dec 2009 description

Climate changes in the Horn of Africa have increased the number of refugees in need of humanitarian aid from the International Society as the prolonged drought has dismantled the traditional survival mechanisms in the area.

The conflict in Somalia centred round the capital Mogadishu is growing worse day by day, and at the same time both Somalia and Ethiopia have experienced a prolonged drought.

11 Dec 2009 description

December 11, 2009, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia - International Medical Corps is launching a program to prevent and respond to sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) among Somali refugees living in southeastern Ethiopia. The program, funded by the U.S. government's Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (BPRM), will build local capacity to effectively prevent and manage cases of SGBV and sexual exploitation and abuse in Boqolmayo, a camp of approximately 15,000 Somali refugees.

"The SGBV program comes at a critical time.

08 Dec 2009 description
report European Union


Brussels, 8 December 2009

The Council adopted the following conclusions:

" 1. The Council attaches importance to the EU's relationships with the countries of the Horn of Africa, underlines the potential of the region and reiterates the EU's commitment to further deepening these relations. It declares the EU's readiness to support the region in meeting its challenges, in close cooperation with the countries concerned as well as with regional and international partners.

08 Dec 2009 description

Unless it received new funding from donors immediately, United Nations humanitarian operations in Somalia would begin 2010 with "zero" in the bank, a "life-threatening" situation that could trigger a spillover of people into neighbouring states like Djibouti, Ethiopia and Kenya, said Mark Bowden, United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Somalia.

Addressing journalists at an afternoon press conference on the humanitarian situation in that country, he said Somalia was the setting for a long-running humanitarian crisis, brought on by drought and made …

02 Dec 2009 description

(U.S. coordinator for counterpiracy speaks with America.gov)

By Charles W. Corey

01 Dec 2009 description
report AlertNet

Written by: Frank Nyakairu

NAIROBI (AlertNet) - Half a million people have fled war in Somalia this year, with hundreds dying on a perilous crossing across the Gulf of Eden to Yemen, the UN refugee agency has said.

The numbers of refugees this year are the highest since the fighting in the country resumed two years ago, according to the UNHCR, while much of the country's population needs humanitarian assistance.

"This year we have seen more than half of Somalia's population in need of humanitarian aid, and more and more people have increasingly been willing to take …

30 Nov 2009 description

- Current food insecurity in the East Africa region is concentrated in the lowland pastoral and marginal cropping areas of the region (mostly in Somalia, Kenya, and southeastern Ethiopia), where the bulk of the 17 million highly or extremely food insecure population is found (Figure 1).

01 Nov 2009 description
report IRIN

SANAA, 1 November 2009 (IRIN) - The past 10 months saw the highest number of Africans reaching Yemeni shores over figures for the same period in 2008 and 2007, when large numbers began travelling to Yemen by boat, according to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

More than 56,600 people arrived on 1,100 boats to Yemen from the Horn of Africa so far this year, already exceeding the total for all 2008, when 50,091 people crossed, Rocco Nuri, an external relations officer at UNHCR, told IRIN on 31 October.

"This is a stunning 40 percent increase in comparison with the same 10-month …

31 Oct 2009 description


The current election crisis in Somaliland: outcome of a failed 'experiment'?

Until recently Somaliland was perceived by many benevolent observers as 'Africa's best kept secret' in the sense of being democratic, peaceful and showing signs of modest economic development, without enjoying international recognition.

21 Oct 2009 description
report Xinhua

NAIROBI, Oct 21, 2009 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- A vital air service providing humanitarian support to hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people in Ethiopia -- particularly the Somali Region -- may be grounded in a matter of weeks, due to a shortage of funds, UN agencies warned on Wednesday.

The UN Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) User Group, which includes UN agencies, non-governmental organizations and donor representatives, said the service urgently requires 1.34 million U. S.

19 Oct 2009 description
report Voice of America

By Alisha Ryu

Nairobi 19 October 2009 Several hundred insurgent fighters in Somalia have reportedly defected to the government in the past week, following fierce fighting that began early this month between militant Islamist factions in the southern city of Kismayo. The split in the Islamist alliance could bring further turmoil and uncertainty to Somalia.

On October 1, two Somali Islamist groups, which had been close allies in the effort to topple the U.N.-backed Somali transitional government in Mogadishu, turned their guns on each other in the port city of Kismayo.

01 Oct 2009 description
report African Union



29 Sep 2009 description

This is a summary of what was said by UNHCR spokesperson Andrej Mahecic - to whom quoted text may be attributed - at the press briefing, on 29 September 2009, at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.

The situation in the Sa'ada province in northern Yemen remains tense and volatile. A fragile calm was reported over the weekend in the city of Sa'ada which has been virtually cut off from the rest of the world for more than six weeks.

28 Sep 2009 description
report IRIN

NAIROBI, 28 September 2009 (IRIN) - The authorities of Somalia's self-declared autonomous region of Puntland have begun cracking down on would-be migrants and people smugglers, who have been using its ports to reach the Gulf States, a senior police officer told IRIN.

He said thousands of Somalis and Ethiopians had gathered in Bosasso, the commercial capital, with the aim of attempting to cross the Gulf of Aden into Yemen.

"We estimate there are between 3,000 and 5,000 migrants currently in and around Bosasso," said Col Osman Hassan Awke, the Bari regional police …

18 Sep 2009 description

A radio campaign aimed at better informing migrants and asylum-seekers of the dangers they face when travelling through Somalia en route to the Gulf of Aden and beyond of the dangers is being launched tomorrow, 19 September on the BBC World Service.

The campaign in Somali by IOM, in partnership with UNHCR, will target both migrants as well as host communities in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Yemen.

As well as aiming to foster better knowledge among would-be migrants before making their decision to go abroad, the campaign also targets host communities in a bid to improve …

02 Sep 2009 description


La Commission a proposé aujourd'hui la création d'un «programme européen commun de réinstallation». Ce programme vise à faire de la réinstallation dans l'UE un instrument plus efficace de protection des réfugiés, en renforçant la coopération politique et pratique entre les États membres. Cette initiative concerne la réinstallation dans un État membre de réfugiés se trouvant dans des pays tiers .

02 Sep 2009 description


Brussels, 2 September 2009 - Today the European Commission proposed the establishment of a "Joint EU Resettlement Programme". This programme aims to develop resettlement within the EU into a more effective instrument to give protection to refugees, providing for closer political and practical cooperation among EU Member States. This initiative concerns the resettlement of refugees from third countries to an EU Member State.

01 Sep 2009 description

This is a summary of what was said by UNHCR spokesperson Andrej Mahecic - to whom quoted text may be attributed - at the press briefing, on 1 September 2009, at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.

Tomorrow (2 September) the European Commission (EC) is expected to put forward a proposal which promotes EU financial support for resettlement to the EU. It will also establish steps for practical cooperation among EU Member States in the area of resettlement.