Humanitarian and civil society agencies working in Rakhine State in Myanmar and in the Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh are deeply concerned that the repatriation of refugees will commence in mid-November, according to an announcement of the Joint Working Group of the Governments of Bangladesh and Myanmar on 30th October.
The Governments of Myanmar and Bangladesh have made assurances to the refugees and the international community that repatriation will only happen when it is safe, voluntary and dignified. We call on both governments to stand by their commitments.
The 2018 Global Hunger Index (GHI) shows that the world has made gradual, long-term progress in reducing overall hunger, but this progress has been uneven. Areas of severe hunger and undernutrition stubbornly persist, reflecting human misery for millions.
The Global Picture
In 2017, the number of people in the world suffering from hunger has increased for the third year in a row, according to the United Nations, to 821 million people. After years of progress, conflict has contributed to global hunger numbers rising to levels last seen a decade ago.
On 7 September, Concern Worldwide hosted a global conference bringing together world leaders, policymakers, and experts on conflict and the humanitarian system to find ways to break the cycle of conflict, hunger and human suffering. Here are five things we learned.
FOREWORD FROM THE HONOURABLE MARIE-CLAUDE BIBEAU, MINISTER OF INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND LA FRANCOPHONIE, GOVERNMENT OF CANADA, September 2018
While conflicts between states have declined dramatically in past years, conflicts within states – frequently involving non-state actors – are on the rise. The result is human displacement, leaving millions of people with few opportunities, limited access to services and an uncertain future.
More than 700,000 Rohingya have fled violence and persecution in their home state of Rakhine, Myanmar since August 25, 2017, crossing the border into Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh.
The number fleeing during this period made it the world’s fastest growing refugee crisis and has formed the world’s largest refugee camp, with more than 900,000 Rohingya refugees in Cox’s Bazar, made up of those fleeing since August last year and around 200,000 who had fled previously.
For immediate release
THE UN and governments around the world are urged to act on key peacebuilding recommendations that address global conflict, which are made in a landmark report published today by international aid agency Concern Worldwide.
The accounts shared in this report highlight the destructive and complex consequences of conflict in its many forms. These include direct experiences of violence and its devastating impact on displacement and food security, alongside more indirect, detrimental effects on community resilience, cohesion and gendered social relations.
These accounts lead to three conclusions, common to both hunger and displacement, and reflecting the harsh realities and enormous challenges faced by communities in conflict affected contexts around the world:
With the crisis entering its ninth year and showing no signs of abating despite recent efforts, 10.7 million people continue to be in urgent need of life-saving assistance across north-east Nigeria, far-north Cameroon, Western Chad and south-east Niger. Nearly 2.4 million people are displaced with fresh waves of violence and human rights abuses resulting in thousands arriving into congested sites on a weekly basis.
One year passed since the beginning of the exodus of an estimated 706,000 Rohingya refugees from Rakhine State, Myanmar to Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh following what the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights called a “textbook example” of ethnic cleansing. The newly arrived Rohingya in Cox’s Bazar have joined hundreds of thousands who were part of previous waves of displacement from Myanmar.
As the global community prepares to mark World Humanitarian Day, the joint challenges of conflict and hunger are at the forefront of our minds. Concern’s Humanitarian Policy Advisor, Caitriona Dowd, shares five things to know about conflict and hunger, and what can be done to break the cycle.
1. Conflict is on the rise and is driving humanitarian needs
Concern’s commitment to leaving no one behind has increasingly taken the organisation to fragile contexts, where the devastating consequences of conflict and resulting levels of human suffering have soared in recent years.
Written by Kristin Myers
Climate change has the power to push millions into poverty. But many communities are building resilience to climate change — with just a little help from Concern.
Would you be surprised to discover that climate change is one of the biggest threats in the fight to end global poverty? It’s true — and according to The World Bank, the effects of climate change have the power to push an additional 100 million people into poverty over the course of the next decade.
Written by Kristin Myers
Think that humanitarian work is always exciting? Well think again! Much of Concern’s programming involves low-tech innovations to improve the lives of the communities we work with. It might not seem that thrilling, but they make a world of a difference. Check out some of our favorites below!
Ongoing conflict in South Sudan has had a domino effect on the nation's health. Here, David Traynor, Concern's Programme Quality Coordinator explains what is being done to remedy this, with support from the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations.
Conflict: The cause of malnutrition
In response to surging food security needs due to the ongoing drought, and pre-famine conditions, five organizations joined together to form the Cash Alliance (CA) with an aim of providing cash support for Somali households affected by drought. This report provides an evaluation of the program. The Cash Alliance is composed of the Norwegian Refugee Council, the Danish Refugee Council, Save the Children, Concern Worldwide, and Cooperazione Internazionale.
Written by Kieran McConville
As bad luck would have it, this year’s monsoon in Bangladesh has been particularly heavy – which is nothing but bad news for those who fled Myanmar in fear of persecution. Concern has a strong presence in the camps of Cox’s Bazar and we spoke to members of our emergency team there to get the latest update.
Across Somalia, people have lost much of their livestock since the drought started in 2015. Poor families, who have the least resources and ability to adapt, have lost 40–60% of their herds in Somaliland and 20–40% in the rest of the country. The drought has also devastated crops, forcing more than 1.15 million people to leave their homes between January 2016 and May 2018, 3 often only once they had become malnourished and weak.