Situation Update: The Sahel Crisis - 22 February 2013
Despite good agricultural production in 2012 and good conditions for pastoralists, the situation in the Sahel remains critical, mostly due to the impact of the 2012 crisis (food insecurity, floods and Mali conflict) as well as previous recent crises. Approximately 10.3 million people remain food insecure in 2013 and over 1.4 million children are at risk of severe acute malnutrition.
Following the military intervention on 11 January 2013, there are an additional 15 973 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Mali and 21 645 new refugees arrived in Burkina Faso, Mauritania and the Niger. This adds to the estimated 227 206 IDPs in Mali and 167 782 refugees registered at the end of 2012.
The risk of food insecurity is growing in the north where it is estimated that 585 000 people are food insecure and 1.2 million are at risk of food insecurity.
In 2012, FAO requested USD 122 million to address the crisis (including the locust threat). Overall,
USD 58 million (48 percent) were mobilized. While these funds have enabled supporting almost 5.2 million people, important livelihood needs were left unattended.
Based on current estimates, for 2013 FAO is requesting a total of USD 135.3 million to support almost 6 million people with livelihood interventions in the Sahel, including those related to the Malian conflict.
To start the operations for the main agricultural campaign (May – October 2013), USD 99 million are immediately required.
Aggravated by existing chronic vulnerabilities, the negative effects of the recent crises in 2005, 2008, 2010 and 2012 remain. Vulnerable people have eroded their capacity to withstand external shocks, many are heavily indebted and have been unable to restore their productive means. Time is of the essence for building resilience to strengthen the livelihoods of the most vulnerable people.