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Sudan Humanitarian Overview Vol 5, Issue 3: Jul - Sep 2009

Situation Report
Originally published
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- Darfur Update

- Southern Sudan Update

- Eastern Sudan Update

- Annual Needs and Livelihoods Assessment

- Funding Overview/Update


The onset of the rainy season, ongoing conflict and insecurity, and constraints on access to people in need presented persistent challenges to the delivery of humanitarian assistance in Darfur between July and September. Filling gaps in delivery of services created by the March expulsion of 13 international NGOs and dissolution of three national NGOs remained a priority. While the initial Government-United Nations joint assessment in four life-saving sectors enabled gaps to be addressed and averted an immediate crisis, the sustainability of these actions remained a critical issue.

Vulnerability continued to deepen as Darfur faced a relatively longer "hunger season" as a result of late rains. At the same time, the security situation remained tense and unpredictable. Kidnapping incidents targeting international organizations, unknown before 2009, heightened the level of threat towards humanitarian workers in Darfur.

The inaccessibility of some areas as a result of insecurity and gaps left by expelled organizations continued to hamper the progress of activities. The number of international staff working for UN agencies and NGOs in Darfur in mid-August was about 435 - partially restoring some of the capacity lost following the March decision, but still far below pre-expulsion levels. Moreover, the geographical shift of staff towards the main town centres had a significant impact on the ability of humanitarian organizations to reach people in need of assistance. In outlying and remote locations, international humanitarian presence was roughly half the pre-March figure - affecting monitoring and evaluation capabilities as well as the ability to implement programming, and creating increased reliance on road missions amid an uncertain security environment. United Nations and NGO staff also continued to experience ad hoc restrictions on movement as a result of bureaucratic obstacles, although the issue of travel restrictions appeared to have reduced in some areas.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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