NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- More than
5.5 million people were displaced across the Horn of Africa by the end of
December 2017, including around 4.1 million internally displaced and 1.4 million
living in the region as refugees and asylum seekers, the UN said in a report
released on Tuesday.
The UN Office
for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in its humanitarian outlook
that the Horn of Africa remains a major migration transit route including to and
from the Arabian Peninsula and to Europe.
“The Horn of
Africa is both the host and the source of significant population displacement
and mixed migration movements, and this is expected to continue in the first six
months of 2018,” said OCHA.
combination of drought, conflict and insecurity have worsened protection
concerns, with violations against civilians, including sexual and gender-based
violence as well as against children, expected to continue in the months ahead,”
the report, in addition to climatic shocks—and in some instances compounded or
driven by them—conflict, insecurity and political instability remain important
drivers of humanitarian need in the region.
said food insecurity escalated by 36 percent in 2017, leaving 14.6 million
people severely food insecure by the end of the year.
said humanitarian needs in the Horn of Africa remain high, driven by climatic
shocks, conflict, insecurity and political instability.
The region is
expected to remain the epicenter of food insecurity and malnutrition in the
first six months of 2018, said the UN.
Horn of Africa, nearly 5.2 million children and women were estimated to be
acutely malnourished by the end of 2017 and 639,718 severely malnourished
children were admitted for treatment during the year,” it said.
the report said, 1.2 million children and pregnant and lactating women (PLW) are
projected to suffer from acute malnutrition from September 2017 to September,
including 230,000 children who are projected to be severely acutely malnourished
(SAM) during this period.
3.6 million children and pregnant and lactating women (PLW) were acutely
malnourished in 2017,” said the UN.
In Kenya, the
report said, 370,000 children required treatment for acute malnutrition in the
drought-affected Arid and Semi-Arid Land areas as of the end of 2017.
UN says food security in Somalia improves amid
declines in famine
MOGADISHU Somalia (Xinhua) --
Food security has improved in Somalia mainly due to continued large-scale
humanitarian assistance and seasonal improvements to food and income sources
during the Deyr (October-December) season, the UN-backed food security analysis
revealed on Monday.
The Food and
Agriculture Organization (FAO)-managed Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit
(FSNAU) and the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET) assessments
however showed that 2.7 million people will face Crisis or Emergency between now
represents improvement in the overall food security situation in Somalia
compared to the 3.2 million people projected to be in Crisis or worse between
April and December 2017,” said the report released in Mogadishu.
said that although the risk of famine has declined, in the absence of
assistance, many households would face large food consumption gaps.
assistance must be sustained to prevent further deterioration of the food
security and nutrition situation in Somalia,” FSNAU said.
the report, an additional 2.7 million people are classified as Stressed through
June, adding that in total, 5.4 million people across Somalia face acute food
in the absence of continued large-scale assistance, food security is expected to
deteriorate through June 2018, as food and income sources decline further,” the
however, said 2017 Deyr rains were still below average in most parts of Somalia
and the 2018 Gu (April-June) rains are also forecast to be below average.
“As a result,
food and income sources are expected to remain below normal in most areas
throughout the projection period,” FSNAU said.
Senior UN officials in Somalia to help tackle
MOGADISHU Somalia (Xinhua) --
Two senior UN officials arrived in Mogadishu on Tuesday to underline the immense
challenge of persistent food insecurity and the new approach to addressing it.
Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark
Lowcock and UN Development Program (UNDP) Administrator Achim Steiner will also
meet with senior government officials, humanitarian and development partners.
principals will highlight the need to continue life-saving humanitarian
assistance as an urgent priority, while simultaneously addressing the root
causes of Somalia’s recurring humanitarian crises and encouraging investment in
the untapped potential of the country,” the UNDP said in a statement on Tuesday.
The Horn of
Africa nation averted a famine last year when the government and partners heeded
early warning reports and ramped up the response.
drought and ongoing conflict, coupled with the resultant displacement of a
million people last year, has left six million people in need of humanitarian
assistance,” said the UNDP.
The UN agency
said recurrent drought and subsequent famine risk have become a devastating and
unsustainable cycle in Somalia, noting that 4.5 billion U.S. dollars have been
spent on emergency responses to save lives in the years since the 2011 famine.
AU calls for more UN support to realize Somalia
elections in 2020
ADDIS ABABA Ethiopia (Xinhua) --
The AU Commissioner for Peace and Security, Ambassador Smail
Chergui, on Monday called for more support from the UN to realize national
elections in Somalia by 2020.
speaking at the sidelines of the second day of session of the 30th
African Union (AU) Assembly of Heads of State and Government, said the AU has
budget for peacekeeping operations in Somalia that lasts only until May 2018.
particularly referring to the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), a
regional peacekeeping mission operated by the African Union with the approval of
the United Nations in Somalia.
recently marked 10 years of peacekeeping in strife-torn Somalia, has grown from
a force of several hundred to around 22,000.
has for some time faced monetary pressure and domestic concerns over casualties
from troop contributing nations. Currently, Ethiopia, Kenya, Burundi, Uganda and
Djibouti make up the AMISOM force.
“As much as
we regain territories, degrade terrorist group Al-Shabab, we need to train and
prepare Somali national forces to take over for these interrelated processes
progress to be sustainable,” said Chergui.
overwhelming unanimity among AU member states on the need to build institutions,
to promote excellent relationship among all regional leaders and prepare next
step in 2020 where we can have a new election with international standard” said
“As much as
we celebrate the defeat of Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, we want the
international community to put at our disposal the same means and support so
that we can quickly recover the territories lost to terrorists in Somalia, Lake
Chad basin, Mali and Sahel region,” he added.
At least 7 al-Shabaab militants killed in south
MOGADISHU Somalia (Xinhua) --
Somali security forces on Monday killed at least seven al-Shabaab militants and
injured a number of others following heavy fighting with insurgents in Bay
region, in the south part of the Horn of Africa nation.
District Commissioner in Bay region Mohamed Ibrahim confirmed that four
government soldiers, including a senior commander, were killed in the fighting.
killed seven al-Shabaab militants, injured several others and recovered four
guns after fighting that lasted several hours in Lug-habar location, along the
road which joins Burhakaba and Baidoa town in this region,” Ibrahim said.
He said the
Somali National Army (SNA) conducted the operation against al-Shabaab militants
in the area after getting information that the insurgents had mounted a
checkpoint in the area.
militants, however, said they won the battle with Somali National Army, claiming
to have killed SNA’s commander for Bur-hakaba town, Abdirahman Osman Abrone.
said its fighters ambushed a SNA convey from Baidoa town, the administrative
capital of Southwest State in Somalia to Burhakaba town.
fighting came amid military operations in the region to flush out insurgents who
have been mounting near-daily attacks on African Union peacekeeping mission
bases, government installations and other public places.