The security situation along the Kenyan-Somali border and around Dadaab is of continued concern. UN staff travel restrictions are in place for travel to locations near the Somali border with only critical missions being authorized.
Heavy fighting broke out on 30 September 2011 close to Somalia’s border with Kenya as Al-Shabaab fighters launched a dawn attack on the strategic town of Dhobley. They were later repelled. The DMOH has reported 46 casualties and four deaths. 14 people are at the Liboi Health Center being treated for gunshot wounds. Out of these, approximately ten need urgent referral. Dhobley is now under control of Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government (TFG) in cooperation with allied militias, with reported backing from the GoK to maintain a buffer zone along the troubled frontier. An uneasy calm exists in Dhobley at present. The town is only 5 km (3 miles) from the Kenyan border and is a major crossing point for Somalis fleeing to the Dadaab Refugee Camps, some 100 km (62 miles) away.
The Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) announced on 27 September that it will provide more funding to develop and introduce vaccines against severe diarrhoea and pneumonia, two leading causes of child mortality in Kenya. Kenya is globally one of the first countries to introduce the penta-valent pneumococcal vaccine into its regular immunization programme. This is anticipated to drastically reduce the occurrence of pneumococcal pneumonia in children under five. In addition, rotavirus vaccines for diarrhea control are expected to be added to the country’s immunization programme in 2013.
A regional seminar titled ‘Exploring a Responsible Framework for the Horn of Africa (HoA) Crisis Response: Context, Challenges and Best Practices’ was held in Nairobi on 03 October 2011 sponsored by UNICEF ESARO and FAO. The one-day seminar included global experts on aid interventions and experience in the HoA and focused on lessons learned from past crises in the region, as well as longer-term approaches so that future escalations of droughts into full humanitarian catastrophes can be prevented.