South Sudan - Complex emergency (Last updated 29/01/2018)


Since civil war broke out in South Sudan in December 2013, fighting, sexual violence, and human rights abuses continue unabated while imposed restrictions and insecurity obstruct the delivery of humanitarian aid. The conflict in the world’s youngest nation enters its fifth year in 2018. Famine warnings have been persistent since early 2017. The crisis is manmade and has a ripple effect in the region; around 2 million South Sudanese have taken refuge in neighboring countries and it is estimated that another 570 000 people will flee the country in 2018.

What are the needs?

South Sudan suffers from decades of conflict and neglect, corruption and mismanagement. Extreme violence coupled with economic decline and worsening food insecurity has led to a crisis of unprecedented proportions. Non-adherence to International Humanitarian Law (IHL) by the warring parties is a constant concern. According to the UN, 7 million South Sudanese – more than half the population - will need humanitarian assistance and protection in 2018.
The number of displaced, both internally and across borders, has risen to more than 4 million. The conflict has triggered a mass exodus of around 2 million people mainly to Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Sudan. A localised famine was declared in February 2017, but a massive humanitarian effort succeeded in preventing a further deterioration of the situation. Five million people are expected to be severely food insecure in the first quarter of 2018, the highest number during this period since December 2013.
Children are caught up in the crisis: 70% of children in South Sudan are out of school. Almost 1.1 million children under the age of five are expected to suffer from acute malnutrition and in need of life-saving treatment. The toll on health care and education has been high. Numerous health facilities have been looted or destroyed. Only 22% of facilities are fully operational (UNOCHA, 2018) and tremendous effort had to be expended to contain South Sudan’s longest cholera outbreak, on-going since June 2016.