High levels of acute food insecurity persist across much of central and eastern Ethiopia due to compounding effects of COVID-19 related restrictions, continued drought recovery, atypically high food prices, conflict-related displacement, weather hazards, and desert locusts. Of greatest concern are areas in north-central Amhara, specifically the Wag Himera Zone, where people and livestock movement are significantly restricted and even with ongoing assistance households still face food consumption gaps, with Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes expected through September.
Other areas of high concern in the country include the lowlands of East and West Hararghe, lowlands of Bale, Guji, Arsi, and parts of Borena zone along the Oromia/Somali border, and parts of Somali Region. In these areas, Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes are anticipated to persist through much of the projection period. This is largely driven by limited access to remittances, low income from casual and agriculture labour given restricted movement, and high food prices (FEWSNET June – Sept 2020 forecast).
Swarms from northwest Kenya are likely to migrate north to Ethiopia where they will disperse in the north and east to mature and breed. This, together with current infestations, are likely to cause a further increase in locust populations in Ethiopia. Some swarms could appear in the western lowlands of Eritrea and breed. (FAO Locust Watch, 13 July 2020).