In August, the operational environment for Somalia remained fluid. The security situation deteriorated, and the political differences between the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) and the Federal Member States (FMS) showed little signs of of reconciliation.
The current drought has displaced more than a million people, mostly women, children, and elderly.
In close collaboration with the authorities and through its leadership in Protection, Shelter, and CCCM clusters, UNHCR with partners continued to deliver lifesaving assistance to the vulnerable internally displaced persons (IDPs) and host communities affected by the drought. The operation also prioritizes durable solutions for refugees and protracted IDPs.
Update on Achievements
For the reporting period, the operational context in Somalia remained complex and characterized by risk of famine, insecurity due to the increased frequency of armed conflict, and fragile political situation.
According to the UNHCR-led Protection and Return Monitoring Network (PRMN), some 1.2 million individuals have been displaced internally within Somalia in 2022. In August, 299,000 new displacements were recorded, among which 197,000 were triggered by conflict and 99,000 by the drought. The displaced families faced multiple protection risks and identified food, shelter, and livelihood support as priority needs.
Nearly half of the country’s estimated population or more than 7.8 million are impacted by the ongoing severe drought. More than 1 million people have been displaced since the beginning of the drought in 2021. The humanitarian situation, particularly in Bay region, has been deteriorating in recent months. In the absence of significant humanitarian assistance reaching the people in need, Famine (IPC Phase 5) is being projected in Baidoa and Burhakaba districts and among displaced people in Baidoa town between October and December 2022. The coping capacity of the most vulnerable has vastly reduced due to impact of four consecutive seasons of poor rainfall, sharp increases in food prices, and conflict.1 In August, Prime Minister Hamza Abdi Barre unveiled the 75-member Federal Council of Ministers, comprising of 26 ministers, 24 state ministers, and 25 deputies. Ten of the 75 members were women, three cabinet ministers, five state ministers, and two deputies.
Prime Minister Barre’s nomination of ministers drew criticism from several state-level politicians as well as senior clan figures, who cited a lack of clan representation in the new cabinet and a failure to observe the 4.5 provision within the power sharing arrangement.
The security situation in the country remained tense, particularly in central and south-central Somalia, where Al-Shabab attacks against the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS), Somali security forces, and government officials went unabated. As a result, there was a significant rise in the number of conflict induced IDPs in August.
Somalia also hosts some 33,670 refugees and asylum-seekers, among which 70 percent are women and children. The majority of refugees and asylum-seekers (68 percent) are from Ethiopia, followed by Yemen (28 percent) and Syria (3 percent). Most refugees and asylum-seekers reside in urban or peri-urban settings across Woqooyi Galbeed and Bari regions, in the northern part of the country. Furthermore, 135,873 former refugees have returned to Somalia from their country of asylum, mostly from Kenya followed by Yemen.