Early season precipitation below average in much of north and northeast
Cumulative precipitation for the early part of the wet season through November 2017 has been below average in areas where precipitation is typically significant, particularly in the north and northeast. However, reports from farmers and extension agents indicate that winter wheat planting has progressed, with delays reported in Baghlan and Kunduz Provinces.
The ongoing La Niña increases the probability for below-average precipitation in Afghanistan during the peak of the wet season (January – April 2018). Although below-average precipitation is most likely, current conditions in the Indian Ocean may somewhat mitigate the impact of La Niña on precipitation outcomes. The timing and distribution of rainfall in March and April will be an important factor for any eventual impact on rainfed staple production.
Approximately 375,000 people have been displaced by conflict in 2017 through November. Recent years have seen a drastic increase in the number of conflict-induced displacements, with 2016 registering as the worst year since 2002 with approximately 670,000 people displaced. With a concurrent weakening in casual labor markets, many displaced households are unable to meet basic food and non-food needs without external assistance.
Due primarily to the disruption of ongoing conflict on livelihoods activities, continued weak labor opportunities, and poor rainfed staple production in 2017, It is expected that the number of people facing acute food insecurity during the 2018 lean season will be greater than the previous year. Available evidence indicates that populations facing Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or worse outcomes are present throughout the country.