The inter-agency aid operation will bring food, sanitation and hygiene supplies, nutrition and health assistance to Rukban. Some 10,000 children will be vaccinated against Measles, Polio and other deadly diseases.
At risk from the fighting is not only the welfare of hundreds of thousands of people and the possibility of mass displacement, but the remarkable progress that both Somaliland and Puntland have made over the years.
Historic levels of funding, large and sustained famine prevention efforts and easing drought helped ease famine risk. But progress could easily be reversed and nearly 500,000 people might face a catastrophe.