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World: EU increases its humanitarian assistance – record budget adopted for 2019

Source: European Commission
Country: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Central African Republic, Colombia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Myanmar, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

Brussels, 16 January 2019

As more and more people face humanitarian crises worldwide, the EU has adopted its highest ever initial annual humanitarian budget of €1.6 billion for 2019.

From long-lasting conflicts in the Middle East and Africa, to the growing impact of climate change worldwide, humanitarian crises are worsening and conflict threatens aid delivery to those most in need.

"With this new budget, the EU remains a leading humanitarian donor in the face of crises such as Syria and Yemen. Humanitarian aid alone cannot solve all problems but we must do everything in our power to help the most vulnerable. This is our humanitarian duty. We must also think about the impact of these many crises on children, on the next generation. That's why a record 10% of the new budget, 10 times more than in 2015, is dedicated to education in emergencies, so we can give children the tools to build a better future," said Christos Stylianides, Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management.

The biggest bulk of the budget will address the crisis in Syria, refugees in neighbouring countries and the extremely critical situation in Yemen. In Africa, EU aid will support people in regions affected by crisis in South Sudan, Central African Republic, Lake Chad basin, the Democratic republic of Congo suffering from an Ebola outbreak and in regions suffering food and nutrition crises, such as Sahel.

In Latin America, EU funding will help the most vulnerable populations affected by the crisis in Venezuela and protracted conflict in Colombia. The European Union will also continue to provide assistance in Afghanistan and help Rohingya populations in both Myanmar and Bangladesh. In Europe, the EU's humanitarian efforts will focus on people affected by the conflict in Ukraine.

In view of the growing effects of climate change, the funding will help vulnerable communities in disaster prone countries to prepare better to various climatic shocks, such as droughts, floods and cyclones.

Background

EU humanitarian aid is impartial and independent, and is based only on needs, delivered in accordance with humanitarian principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence. The EU's humanitarian assistance helps millions of people in need across the world. EU assistance is implemented via humanitarian partner organisations, including UN agencies, non-governmental organisations and the Red Cross family, who have signed partnership agreements with the European Commission. The Commission closely monitors the use of EU funds via its global network of humanitarian experts and has strict rules in place to ensure funding is well spent.

IP/19/426

World: Humanitarian Funding Update December 2018 – United Nations Coordinated Appeals

Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Country: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Haiti, Indonesia, Iraq, Libya, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

At the end of December 2018, 21 Humanitarian Response Plans (HRP) and the Syria Regional Response Plan (3RP) required US$24.93 billion to assist 97.9 million people in urgent need of humanitarian support. The requirements remained unchanged as of the end of November 2018. The plans are funded at $14.58 billion which amounts to 58.5 per cent of financial requirements for 2018. Notably, the percentage of total funding contributed through humanitarian response plans carried out by the UN with partners in 2018 is estimated at 62.9%. This is higher than at any time in the last ten years except 2017 (66.2 per cent). The plans were funded at $14.58 billion which amounted to 58.5 per cent of financial requirements for 2018.

Global requirements finished the year $230 million higher than for December 2017, and the amount of funding reported against UN-coordinated appeals at the end of 2018 was $78 million higher than at this time last year.

To make information on vulnerable people’s needs, planned response, funding and funding gaps in humanitarian crises accessible to all in one place, on 4 December, OCHA announced the launch of a new web-based portal, Humanitarian Insight.

Pooled Funds

With $945 million received from 32 Member States, one crown dependency and the general public through the UN Foundation, 2018 became the fifth consecutive year of record-high contributions received for country-based pooled funds (CBPFs). The increased contributions to CBPFs are testament to donors’ trust in this funding mechanism as a tool for principled, transparent and inclusive humanitarian assistance. Globally, a total of $756 million was allocated during the calendar year to 1,334 projects implemented by 657 partners, with two-thirds of overall CBPF allocations disbursed to NGOs. Over 24 percent were directly allocated to local and national NGOs, amounting to some $183 million. Health, emergency shelter and non-food items, water, sanitation and hygiene, food security, nutrition and protection were the largest funded sectors during 2018. In 2018, the Yemen Humanitarian Fund became the largest CBPF ever, allocating $188 million to 53 partners implementing 112 projects. The country-based funds in Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Turkey each allocated over $50 million.

Between 1 January and 31 December 2018, the Emergency Relief Coordinator approved the largest amount of funding from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) in a single year with a total of $500 million. This includes $320 million from the Rapid Response Window and $180 million from the Underfunded Emergencies Window, for life-saving activities in 49 countries. In December, a total of $12.8 million was released to assist Congolese returnees and people expelled from Angola, to meet needs outstanding since the October earthquake in Haiti, and to support people affected by flooding in Nigeria.

Specific appeal information

On 17 December, the Palestinian Authority and the Humanitarian Coordinator for the occupied Palestinian territory launched the 2019 Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) for $350 million to address critical humanitarian needs of 1.4 million Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. A full 77 per cent of the requested funds target Gaza where the humanitarian crisis has been aggravated by a massive rise in Palestinian casualties due to demonstrations. Israel’s prolonged blockade, the internal Palestinian political divide and recurrent escalations of hostilities necessitate urgent humanitarian assistance for people assessed as being most in need of protection, food, health care, shelter, water and sanitation in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

A three-month Operational Plan for Rapid Response to Internal Displacement issued on 31 December seeks $25.5 million to reach civilians displaced by inter-communal violence in Ethiopia. The plan focuses exclusively on addressing health, nutrition, education, water, sanitation and hygiene, non-food items, protection and agriculture issues related to recent violence-induced displacements around Kamashi and Assoss (Benishangul Gumuz region) and East and West Wollega (Oromia region). Nearly 250,000 people have been displaced in these regions since September 2018. The plan has been developed to bridge the period between now and the official launch of the 2019 Humanitarian and Disaster Resilience Plan (HDRP). The needs and requirements for the Benishangul Gumuz-East/West Wollega response will be included in the HDRP.

On 13 December, Assistant-Secretary-General/Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator (ASG/DERC) Ursula Mueller delivered a statement to the Security Council on the humanitarian situation in Ukraine, where more than 3,000 civilians have been killed and up to 9,000 injured since conflict began in 2014. The crisis affects over 30 per cent of elderly people in the country, the highest proportion of people in this category in the world. The 2018 Humanitarian Response Plan, which required $187 million, was only 32 per cent funded. Without adequate funds, food, healthcare, water and sanitation, and other life-saving assistance cannot be provided.

During a 14 December briefing the USG/ERC and the Special Envoy for Yemen urged the Security Council to act swiftly to ensure full implementation of the Stockholm Agreement to demilitarize ports in the country. The agreement requires mutual withdrawal of forces from Hodeida city and its ports and a governorate-wide ceasefire to allow desperately needed humanitarian assistance to flow. The USG/ERC encouraged all parties to continue to engage seriously in implementing the multiple agreements reached in Sweden. The Government of Yemen requires billions of dollars in external support for its 2019 budget, and in parallel this year’s humanitarian response plan for Yemen requests $4 billion, about half of it for emergency food assistance.

On 11 December at a meeting in New York on the gravity of the humanitarian situation in the Central African Republic, OCHA reiterated that response to this crisis is a priority for the organization and announced that in 2019 a high-level meeting will be arranged to address the impact of underfunding on the level of humanitarian response in the Central African Republic.

In 2019 twelve countries will have multi-year HRPs. These are Afghanistan, Cameroon, CAR, Chad, DRC, Haiti, Niger, Nigeria, oPt, Somalia, Sudan and Ukraine.

World: Preventive Priorities Survey: 2019

Source: Council on Foreign Relations
Country: Afghanistan, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Croatia, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, India, Iraq, Montenegro, Myanmar, Nicaragua, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Serbia, Somalia, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Ukraine, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen, Zimbabwe

U.S. foreign policy experts assess the likelihood and impact of thirty potential crises or conflicts around the world in the coming year in CFR’s annual survey.

Download PDF

Each year since 2008, the Council on Foreign Relations’ Center for Preventive Action (CPA) has asked foreign policy experts to rank thirty ongoing or potential conflicts based on their likelihood of occurring or escalating in the next year and their potential impact on U.S. national interests.

“The annual Preventive Priorities Survey is unique in providing a regular, forward-looking assessment of conflict and instability around the world in a way that helps policymakers focus attention on the most important risks,” explains Paul B. Stares, General John W. Vessey senior fellow for conflict prevention and CPA director.

Read more on Council on Foreign Relations.

World: 2019 Early Warning Forecast – Conflict & Climate: Drivers of Disaster

Source: Lutheran World Relief
Country: Cameroon, Chad, Colombia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ecuador, Jordan, Lebanon, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Peru, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

The 2019 Early Warning Forecast, a publication of Lutheran World Relief and IMA World Health

BALTIMORE, Jan. 2, 2019 - Lutheran World Relief (LWR), an international NGO working to develop sustainable solutions to poverty, and IMA World Health, a faith-based agency that helps vulnerable communities to address their public health challenges, have released the 2019 Early Warning Forecast of regions they are monitoring for potential or worsening humanitarian crises over the coming year: Conflict & Climate: Drivers of Disaster.

Ambassador Daniel V. Speckhard, president & CEO, noted that armed conflict is a thread running through the world's current crises. "These will be two of the most critical driving forces behind humanitarian emergencies over the next year and into the foreseeable future, even if their effects are indirect," he said.

"Armed conflict continues to cause some of the world's largest and most direct humanitarian crises, including the war in Yemen, the ongoing conflict in Syria and fighting in South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo. It is the source of the highest levels of displacement on record, according to the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees. An unprecedented 65.3 million people have been forced from their homes, more than half of them children," Speckhard said.

Speckhard noted that climate change has also been identified as a major driver behind the recent increase in global hunger, after years of promising decline, as well as the cause of severe food crises.

"The negative impact of climate change on global food production, its impact on food security and livelihoods, and increased degradation of natural resources all makes this a vicious circle that threatens to spiral downward without immediate, decisive action," he said.

The countries and regions on the 2019 Watch List include:

  • Yemen: the world's worst humanitarian catastrophe

  • Are superstorms the new normal?

  • A legacy of suffering in the Democratic Republic of Congo

  • Undermining the Palestinian health system in East Jerusalem

  • Venezuela fuels a regional crisis

  • A regional crisis deteriorates in the Lake Chad Basin

  • The shrinking humanitarian space

The 2019 Early Warning Forecast can be downloaded at https://lwr.exposure.co/conflict-climate-drivers-of-disaster.

World: Expert views – As crises multiply, what are aid groups’ priorities for 2019?

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation
Country: Bangladesh, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Colombia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Myanmar, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

We asked aid agencies to name their 3 priorities for 2019

by Emma Batha

LONDON, Dec 28 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Aid agencies are bracing for a challenging new year as they tackle protracted conflicts from Yemen to Central African Republic and get to grips with escalating crises such as the mass exodus of Venezuelans fleeing turmoil at home.

The United Nations has asked donors for $21.9 billion to address 21 humanitarian crises in 2019, including Yemen, its biggest aid operation. This appeal does not include Syria which is expected to bring the total to $25 billion. We asked aid agencies to name their 3 priorities for 2019.

INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF RED CROSS AND RED CRESCENT SOCIETIES - Elhadj As Sy, secretary general

1) Getting ready for the next pandemic. 2018 saw Ebola, 2017 Zika and Lassa. What's next? Our priorities: community engagement, emergency health care, water and sanitation services to protect against disease.

2) Protecting the "missing millions". Migrants on the move, women and children, disabled people: our research has quantified those who are left out of humanitarian response.

3) Being ready for more climate-related shocks and hazards. Supporting adaptation to build resilience; activating early warning systems and early action; building on innovative approaches like forecast-based financing.

OCHA - Mark Lowcock, U.N. humanitarian chief

1) Close the persistent funding gap between what we receive and need to respond. The record $14.3 billion that generous donors provided for U.N.-coordinated humanitarian response plans this year meets only 57 percent of needs.

2) Practical measures to improve warring parties' respect for international humanitarian law. I'll bolster civil-military capability to help facilitate compliance.

3) Implement stronger measures to prevent sexual exploitation and abuse within the aid community.

WORLD FOOD PROGRAMME - Corinne Woods, communications director

1) Scaling up our food assistance to meet the needs of millions of hungry people in Yemen, with particular attention to the women and children on whom malnutrition is taking a toll.

2) Working with governments and other partners to help rebuild the livelihoods and strengthen the resilience of millions around the world whose lives are being torn apart by conflict and climate change.

3) Harnessing the latest in digital technology, including blockchain and biometrics, to move the fight against food insecurity into a different gear and take us towards a world of zero hunger.

SAVE THE CHILDREN - Daniele Timarco, humanitarian director

1) Yemen: Some 85,000 children under five may have died of starvation and disease. All involved need to step up to help bring an end to this conflict.

2) Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC): This is one of the most complex humanitarian crises, which includes the second largest Ebola outbreak ever. 2019 will be a decisive year, in which the downward spiral can hopefully be stopped.

3) Venezuela/Colombia: An estimated 1.5 million Venezuelans have crossed into Colombia, 60 percent of whom are children at risk of disease, trafficking, exploitation or recruitment.

OXFAM - Nigel Timmins, humanitarian director

1) In Yemen, the U.N. is warning that we could see the world's worst famine in 100 years. Already over 8 million people are at emergency hunger levels. This is a man-made disaster fuelled by all sides in the conflict.

2) The DRC Ebola outbreak continues to worsen. Once it's under control, we must rebuild lives and communities. Ebola outbreaks impact local economies, and survivors and their families suffer stigma.

3) The situation in South Sudan is likely to deteriorate in 2019. By March, it's estimated 4-5 million people will be in hunger with 26,000-36,000 in famine conditions.

ACTIONAID - Rachid Boumnijel, acting head of humanitarian response

1) DRC: In 2019, the international community must urgently redouble its efforts to end this conflict. It's also vital to end the deplorable use of rape as a 'weapon of war'.

2) The Rohingya refugee crisis: We're working with Rohingya refugee women who've survived terrible sexual violence – and they're telling us they want safety, justice and some control over their future. It's vital that they're not forced to return.

3) Yemen: This catastrophic conflict has pushed ordinary people to the brink of mass famine. The hostilities need to end.

CARE INTERNATIONAL UK - Tom Newby, head of humanitarian

1) Climate change: We're already seeing the impacts and it's clear now that so much is irreversible. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's report was quite frightening in its warning that we only have 12 years to limit catastrophe.

2) Yemen: We need a political solution and end to fighting.

3) Refugees: It's crucial that we see a global commitment to both the spirit and the words of the global refugee and migration compacts, and make sure states do not just cherry-pick the bits they like and ignore the rest.

INTERNATIONAL RESCUE COMMITTEE - Sanj Srikanthan, senior vice president

1) Yemen: 20.5 million civilians are on the brink of famine. The alarming lack of political will to find a solution to the conflict means no one can claim to be surprised by the severity of this crisis – it's as predictable as it's preventable.

2) South Sudan: Despite a peace agreement in 2018, the threat of a re-escalation of civil war persists and the humanitarian impact would be disastrous.

3) Nigeria: In 2018 Nigeria overtook India as the country with the world's largest number of poor people. Attacks by armed groups are on the increase and elections in February could destabilise the situation further.

ISLAMIC RELIEF WORLDWIDE - Naser Haghamed, CEO

1) Political will to end conflicts in Myanmar, Syria and Yemen. These three countries, more than others, have defined humanitarian action for all NGOs over the past decade. Without sincere and decisive action they may yet drag into the next decade.

2) Improve humanitarian access. NGOs have seen the humanitarian space shrink in several conflict areas including Syria, Yemen and South Sudan, putting aid workers at risk and depriving people of essential supplies.

3) Meet the funding target of the OCHA Humanitarian Response Plan. The current scale of human suffering is greater than at any time since the Second World War.

MERCY CORPS - Craig Redmond, senior vice president for programmes

1) We must better understand and combat the root causes of conflict in places like DRC, Central African Republic (CAR) and Nigeria through improved governance, addressing past grievances and equitable economic growth.

2) Making markets work in crisis. As conflicts are now more protracted than two decades ago, it's an urgent priority that we enable affected people and communities to take control of their recovery through local systems, and reduce dependence on relief.

3) Providing opportunity to young people. With the DRC election result likely in the new year and the Nigeria election planned for February, the two countries with the most people living in poverty could potentially see major political shifts. We must ensure young people feel included and have prospects.

CARITAS - Michel Roy, secretary general

1) Work to improve the welcome of migrants and lessen their social exclusion.

2) Push for more ambitious targets on limiting global warming to no higher than 1.5 degrees.

3) Push for peace in Israel and occupied Palestinian territory, Syria, CAR and Cameroon.

NORWEGIAN REFUGEE COUNCIL - Jan Egeland, secretary general

1) We will strive to become better at reaching people in war-zones and hard-to-reach areas with protection and assistance, as these are the places where too many suffer alone.

2) We will prioritise neglected crises to ensure people get support based on needs, and not political or media interest.

3) We will work for durable solutions, so that refugees can return safely home in a voluntary and dignified way or be integrated where they are now. We expect to see the first voluntary returns to parts of Syria next year, and we must be prepared to assist.

(Some answers have been edited)

(Reporting by Emma Batha @emmabatha; Editing by Belinda Goldsmith Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's and LGBT+ rights, human trafficking, property rights, and climate change. Visit http://news.trust.org)

World: IRC Emergency Watchlist 2019

Source: International Rescue Committee
Country: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Mexico, Myanmar, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Somalia, South Sudan, Suda...

World: Aperçu de la Situation Humanitaire Mondiale 2019 – Version Abrégée

Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Country: Afghanistan, Argentina, Aruba (The Netherlands), Bangladesh, Brazil, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Curaçao (The Netherlands), Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, Guyana, Haiti, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Libya, Madagascar, Mali, Mexico, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

Aperçu de la situation humanitaire mondiale

PERSONNES DANS
LE BESOIN 131,7M

PERSONNES DEVANT
RECEVOIR UNE AIDE 93,6M

BESOINS FINANCIERS *
USD 21,9Md

Tendances et défis mondiaux

Malgré les progrès du développement mondial, une personne sur 70 dans le monde est en proie à
une crise et a besoin d’assistance humanitaire et de protection d’urgence.

De plus en plus de personnes sont déplacées par les conflits. Le nombre de personnes déplacées
de force est passé de 59,5 millions en 2014 à 68,5 millions en 2017.

Les catastrophes naturelles et le changement climatique ont un coût humain élevé. Les
catastrophes affectent 350 millions de personnes en moyenne chaque année et causent des
milliards de dollars de dégâts.

L’insécurité alimentaire est en augmentation. En juste deux ans, entre 2015 et 2017, le nombre
de personnes confronté à l’insécurité alimentaire de niveau critique ou pire a augmenté de 80
millions à 124 millions de personnes.

Les crises exacerbent les inégalités entre les sexes. Dans les situations de conflit, les filles ont
une probabilité 2,5 fois plus importante que les garçons d’être déscolarisées.

Les crises humanitaires affectent un plus grand nombre de personnes et durent plus longtemps.
Le nombre de personnes ciblées pour recevoir une assistance dans le cadre des Plans de réponse
humanitaire (HRP) des Nations unies a augmenté de 77 millions en 2014 à 101 millions en 2018.

Les crises humanitaires durent aujourd’hui, en moyenne, plus de neuf ans. Près de trois-quarts
des personnes ciblées pour recevoir de l’assistance en 2018 se trouvent dans des pays affectés
par une crise humanitaire depuis sept ans ou plus.

Les organisations humanitaires réussissent de plus en plus à sauver des vies et à réduire les
souffrances mais de nombreux besoins restent encore sans réponse.

Malgré une augmentation importante des financements de 10,6 milliards de dollars en 2014 à
13,9 milliards de dollars en 2017, le manque de financement des plans de réponse humanitaire
des Nations unies stagne à environ 40%.

2018 est en passe d’être une autre année record pour le financement humanitaire. Au 19
novembre, les donateurs et partenaires avaient fait état de contributions de 13,9 milliards de
dollars aux Plans de réponse humanitaire par rapport à 12,6 milliards de dollars à la même
période l’année dernière.

Les niveaux de financement ont également augmenté. Au 19 novembre, le financement des Plans
de réponse était de 56% par rapport à 52% à la même période en 2018.

Le financement humanitaire mondial a atteint un nouveau summum de 22 milliards de dollars par
rapport aux 21,5 milliards de dollars levés en 2017.

Les crises majeures et prolongées reçoivent la majorité des ressources. Entre 2014 et 2018,
quatre crises – en Somalie, au Soudan du Sud, au Soudan et en Syrie – ont comptabilisé à elles
seules 55% de tous les financements demandés et reçus.

World: Global Humanitarian Overview 2019 – Abridged version [EN/AR/ES/ZH]

Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Country: Afghanistan, Argentina, Aruba (The Netherlands), Bangladesh, Brazil, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Curaçao (The Netherlands), Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, Guyana, Haiti, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Libya, Madagascar, Mali, Mexico, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

At a glance

PEOPLE IN NEED 131.7M
PEOPLE TO RECEIVE AID 93.6M
FUNDING REQUIRED* $21.9B

Global trends and challenges

Despite global development gains, one in every 70 people around the world is caught up in crisis and urgently needs humanitarian assistance and protection.

More people are being displaced by conflict. The number of forcibly displaced people rose from 59.5 million in 2014 to 68.5 million in 2017.

Natural disasters and climate change have a high human cost. Disasters affect 350 million people on average each year and cause billions of dollars of damage.

Food insecurity is rising. In just two years between 2015 and 2017, the number of people experiencing crisis-level food insecurity or worse increased from 80 million to 124 million people.

Crises exacerbate gender inequalities. Girls in conflict settings are 2.5 times more likely to be out of school than boys.

Humanitarian crises affect more people, for longer. The number of people targeted to receive assistance through UN-led humanitarian response plans (HRPs) increased from 77 million in 2014 to 101 million in 2018.

The average humanitarian crisis now lasts more than nine years. Nearly three quarters of people targeted to receive assistance in 2018 are in countries affected by humanitarian crisis for seven years or more.

Humanitarian organizations are increasingly successful in saving lives and reducing suffering, but many needs still remain unmet.

Despite a significant increase in funding, from $10.6 billion in 2014 to $13.9 billion in 2017, the gap in coverage for UN-led humanitarian response plans hovers at about 40 per cent. 2018 is on track to be another record year for humanitarian funding. As of 19 November, donors and partners have reported contributions of $13.9 billion to HRPs, compared with $12.6 billion at the same time last year.

Coverage rates have also increased. As of 19 November, coverage for HRPs was at 56 per cent, compared with 52 per cent at the same time in 2018.

Global humanitarian funding has reached a new high of $22 billion, surpassing the $21.5 billion raised in 2017.

Large protracted crises command the majority of resources. Between 2014 and 2018, just four crises – Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Syria – accounted for 55 per cent of all funding requested and received.

World: Humanitarian Funding Update November 2018 – United Nations Coordinated Appeals

Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Country: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Haiti, Indonesia, Iraq, Libya, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

Launch of the Global Humanitarian Overview 2019 and the World Humanitarian Data and Trends 2018 At the end of November 2018, 21 Humanitarian Response Plans (HRP) and the Syria Regional Response Plan (3RP) require US$ US$24.93 to assist 97.9 million people in urgent need of humanitarian support. The requirements are lower than announced at the end of October ($25.2 billion) as those for Ethiopia have now been reduced. The plans are funded at $14.29 billion; this amounts to 57.3 per cent of financial requirements for 2018.

Two million less people are considered to be in need in Mali than at the end of October, hence the reduction in the overall number of people in need in this month’s overview.

Global requirements are $1.8 billion higher than at this time in 2017, and the amount of funding received is $1.69 billion higher than it was at this time last year.

On 4 December 2018, the USG/ERC launched the Global Humanitarian Overview 2019 and World Humanitarian Data and Trends 2018 at an event in the Council Chamber, United Nations Office of Geneva. The event was attended by almost 200 representatives of Member States, intergovernmental and international organizations, UN organizations and NGOs, and by the Red Cross movement, the World Economic Forum and specialized meteorological foundations. A recording of the event can be found here: Event in Geneva to launch the GHO 2019 and WHDT 2018.

Pooled Funds In 2018, as of early December, country-based pooled funds (CBPF) received a total of US$845 million, once again setting a new record in annual contributions. Generous support from 31 Member States, from one crown dependency and from the general public through the UN Foundation, continues to demonstrate a high level of confidence in this mechanism for reaching the people most affected by humanitarian emergencies. In the past year, CBPFs have allocated a total $695 million, with $81 million awaiting approval. The Yemen Humanitarian Fund (HF) remains the largest of the funds, with $187 million already allocated towards response to urgent humanitarian needs. The HFs in Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Ethiopia, South Sudan and Turkey each allocated over $50 million. Globally, three-fifths of all CBPF allocations were disbursed to NGOs, including 24 per cent ($170 million) directly to national and local NGOs. Another two-fifths were allocated to UN agencies, while Red Cross/ Red Crescent organizations received 1 percent of funding ($8 million).

Between 1 January and 30 November 2018, the Emergency Relief Coordinator approved $488 million in grants from the Central Emergency

Response Fund (CERF), including $308 million from the Rapid Response Window and $180 million from the Underfunded Emergencies Window.

The grants will support life-saving activities in 48 countries. In November, a total of $11 million was released to scale-up response to cholera in Nigeria and pneumonic plague in Madagascar, as well as to expand existing UN programmes in Venezuela in support of government efforts to increase essential health and nutrition services.

World: Statement on the 70th Anniversary of the Genocide Convention and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Source: Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect
Country: Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Myanmar, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, the former Yugoslav Republic of...

World: Aid in Danger: Security Incident Data Analysis – All Regions (January 2017 – June 2018)

Source: Insecurity Insight
Country: Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Benin, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, China - Hong Kong (Special Administrative Region), Colombia, Costa Rica, Côte d'Ivoire, Cuba, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Fiji, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Guinea, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Jordan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People's Democratic Republic (the), Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Republic of Tanzania, Vanuatu, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), Viet Nam, World, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe

World: Global Humanitarian Appeal aims to reach 93.6 million people with assistance in 2019

Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Country: Afghanistan, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Haiti, Iraq, Mali, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Somalia, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

Crises affect more people, for longer, and conflict remains the main driver of humanitarian and protection needs. The Global Humanitarian Overview presents detailed, prioritized and costed plans for how the United Nations and partner organizations will respond worldwide

(Geneva, 4 December 2018) – The world is witnessing extremely high levels of humanitarian need driven primarily by armed conflicts that generate enormous suffering and displacement for years on end.

In 2019, nearly 132 million people across the world will need humanitarian assistance. The United Nations and its partner organizations aim to assist 93.6 million of the most vulnerable with food, shelter, health care, emergency education, protection and other basic assistance, according the Global Humanitarian Overview 2019 (GHO) presented by Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock today in Geneva.

Funding requirements for 2019 amount to US$21.9 billion. This figure does not include the financial requirements for Syria, which will be confirmed upon finalization of the 2019 Syria Humanitarian Response Plan. It is expected that total requirements, including those for Syria, will be comparable to current requirements of around $25 billion. Donors have this year provided a record $13.9 billion, as of mid-November, about 10 per cent more than at the same time in 2017, which was itself a record.

“Donors are increasingly generous, yet every year there is a gap between what is required and the funding received,” Mr. Lowcock said. “Early action and innovative financing, such as risk insurance and contingency financing, can help close this gap. Improved coordination with development programming in 2019 can also help reduce overall future requirements by tackling the root causes of humanitarian need and strengthening community resilience.”

Over recent years, the average length of Humanitarian Response Plans – the individual country plans which combined make up the annual GHO – have increased from 5.2 years in 2014 to 9.3 years in 2018. The numbers of people affected, and the financial requirements to meet their urgent needs, have also gone up year after year. Large, protracted crises have commanded the majority of resources. Between 2014 and 2018, the crises in Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Syria alone accounted for 55 per cent of all funding requested and received.

Natural disasters and climate change also have a high human cost. Disasters affect 350 million people on average each year and cause billions of dollars in damage.

The humanitarian community continues to deliver, more and better, and has reached tens of millions of people in 41 countries in 2018 through coordinated response plans. For example, every month humanitarians reach 8 million Yemenis with food assistance and 5.4 million people in Syria with supplies, medical assistance and protection. This is happening even as threats to the safety of aid workers are on the rise. “The humanitarian system today is more effective than ever. We are better at identifying different groups’ specific needs and vulnerabilities and quicker to respond when disaster strikes. Response plans are now more inclusive, comprehensive, innovative and prioritized,” Mr. Lowcock said.

Affected people themselves have informed the coordinated response plans in face-to-face interviews and assessments are carried out at local community level. In addition, dedicated networks are active in at least 20 countries to protect people from sexual exploitation and abuse.

The Global Humanitarian Overview 2019 and World Humanitarian Data and Trends 2018 documents are available online www.unocha.org/global-humanitarian-overview-2019 Additional resources for media on the same page include photos, film with script, b-roll/shotlist and social media videos.

Note to Editors

The Global Humanitarian Overview 2019 is based on Humanitarian Response Plans in Afghanistan, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Ethiopia, Haiti, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria [excluding financial requirements], Ukraine and Yemen.

The overall financial request also includes people covered in the Syria Regional Refugee and Resilience Response Plan and the Venezuela Outflow appeal.

Other response plans are presented but not included in the overall financial requirements. They include Regional Refugee Response Plans for Burundi, DRC, Nigeria and South Sudan and country plans for Bangladesh, DPR Korea, Pakistan, and the Philippines.

The World Humanitarian Data and Trends 2018 focuses on trends and opportunities in humanitarian action. It is part of OCHA's efforts to improve data and analysis on humanitarian situations worldwide and build a humanitarian data community.

World: Global Humanitarian Overview 2019

Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Country: Afghanistan, Argentina, Aruba (The Netherlands), Bangladesh, Brazil, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Curaçao (The Netherlands), Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, Guyana, Haiti, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Libya, Madagascar, Mali, Mexico, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

GLOBAL HUMANITARIAN APPEAL AIMS TO REACH 93.6 MILLION PEOPLE WITH ASSISTANCE IN 2019

Crises affect more people, for longer, and conflict remains the main driver of humanitarian and protection needs. The Global Humanitarian Overview presents detailed, prioritized and costed plans for how the United Nations and partner organizations will respond worldwide

(Geneva, 4 December 2018) – The world is witnessing extremely high levels of humanitarian need driven primarily by armed conflicts that generate enormous suffering and displacement for years on end.

In 2019, nearly 132 million people across the world will need humanitarian assistance. The United Nations and its partner organizations aim to assist 93.6 million of the most vulnerable with food, shelter, health care, emergency education, protection and other basic assistance, according to the Global Humanitarian Overview 2019 (GHO) presented by Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock today in Geneva.

Funding requirements for 2019 amount to US$21.9 billion. This figure does not include the financial requirements for Syria, which will be confirmed upon finalization of the 2019 Syria Humanitarian Response Plan. It is expected that total requirements, including those for Syria, will be comparable to current requirements of around $25 billion. Donors have this year provided a record $13.9 billion, as of mid-November, about 10 per cent more than at the same time in 2017, which was itself a record.

“Donors are increasingly generous, yet every year there is a gap between what is required and the funding received,” Mr. Lowcock said. “Early action and innovative financing, such as risk insurance and contingency financing, can help close this gap. Improved coordination with development programming in 2019 can also help reduce overall future requirements by tackling the root causes of humanitarian need and strengthening community resilience.”

Over recent years, the average length of Humanitarian Response Plans – the individual country plans which combined make up the annual GHO – have increased from 5.2 years in 2014 to 9.3 years in 2018. The numbers of people affected, and the financial requirements to meet their urgent needs, have also gone up year after year. Large, protracted crises have commanded the majority of resources. Between 2014 and 2018, the crises in Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Syria alone accounted for 55 per cent of all funding requested and received.

Natural disasters and climate change also have a high human cost. Disasters affect 350 million people on average each year and cause billions of dollars in damage.

The humanitarian community continues to deliver, more and better, and has reached tens of millions of people in 41 countries in 2018 through coordinated response plans. For example, every month humanitarians reach 8 million Yemenis with food assistance and 5.4 million people in Syria with supplies, medical assistance and protection. This is happening even as threats to the safety of aid workers are on the rise.

“The humanitarian system today is more effective than ever. We are better at identifying different groups’ specific needs and vulnerabilities and quicker to respond when disaster strikes.

"Response plans are now more inclusive, comprehensive, innovative and prioritized,” Mr. Lowcock said.

Affected people themselves have informed the coordinated response plans in face-to-face interviews and assessments are carried out at local community level. In addition, dedicated networks are active in at least 20 countries to protect people from sexual exploitation and abuse.

The Global Humanitarian Overview 2019 and World Humanitarian Data and Trends 2018 documents are available online www.unocha.org/global-humanitarian-overview-2019

World: The Emerging Crisis: Is Famine Returning as a Major Driver of Migration?

Source: Migration Policy Institute
Country: Ethiopia, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

By Batul Sadliwala and Alex de Waal

The synopsis taught in Irish schools of the demographic impact of the Great Hunger that devastated Ireland from 1845-52 is as follows: 1 million dead, 2 million emigrants. Is it a general rule that famines generate mass migration or was Ireland the exception? Remarkably, despite long-standing demographic research into famine and intensive current interest in migration, there is no definitive answer. But there is urgent policy interest in the link between mass starvation and migration. After decades in which famines had declined almost to vanishing point, 2017 and 2018 have witnessed their disturbing return, perhaps most starkly surrounding the war-induced starvation unfolding in Yemen. Meanwhile, Venezuela’s economic collapse and the government's highly selective allocation of food and other essentials are causing unprecedented mass migration to the country’s Latin American neighbors, with reports of severe malnutrition and deaths from starvation.

This article examines the causes and migration patterns of episodes of mass starvation from the 19th century onward and demonstrates the critical need for deeper research on the linkages between famine and migration. Among the unanswered questions: Does migration mitigate starvation or worsen it? Does it precede or follow famine? And how?

Resurgence of an Age-Old Reality

The two global food insecurity and famine early-warning systems—the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Global Early Warning-Early Action (EWEA) report and the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET)—sounded the alarm in 2017 and repeated it earlier this year. According to the FAO, six countries/regions were at a high risk of their food security and agriculture deteriorating to the point of an emergency. Of these, Yemen, South Sudan, and Somalia were described as facing the “risk of famine.”

In Somalia and Ethiopia’s Somali region, a prolonged drought combined with armed conflict threatens the collapse of agricultural production and livelihoods. Conflict and ensuing mass displacement have set conditions for widespread starvation in South Sudan and northeast Nigeria. And in Yemen, the economic war waged by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to try to force the Houthi rebellion into surrender has brought the country to the brink of a disaster, described by UN Undersecretary General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Mark Lowcock as “an imminent and great big famine.”

According to FEWSNET, 53 percent of Yemen’s population—15 million people—need monthly emergency food assistance. To date, there have been 1 million cases of cholera and uncounted deaths from starvation. Moreover, as detailed in a recent report by London School of Economics Professor Martha Mundy on the Saudi-led coalition’s military strategy, there is strong evidence that the aerial bombardment of food-production and distribution facilities in areas under control of the Houthi opposition is deliberate.

The Changing Face of Famine

Famines are shape-shifters. In the pre-industrial era, agrarian societies were vulnerable to famine when crops failed. Imperial conquest and the devastations it wrought brought mass starvation to many colonized peoples. The wars of extermination of the mid-20th century and totalitarian rule in Europe and Asia engendered mass starvation through genocidal policies—Stalin’s Holodomor famine in Ukraine in 1932-34 and the Nazi Hunger plan on the Eastern Front in 1941-44 stand out as particularly terrible examples, each claiming millions of lives. Brutal efforts at titanic social transformation in Mao Zedong’s China killed somewhere between 25 million and 40 million, while in Pol Pot’s Cambodia more than 1 million perished.

In total, famines and episodes of forcible mass starvation have killed more than 104 million people worldwide since 1870, with an estimated 30 million dying from great famines in the last three decades of the 19th century and 74 million during the 20th century, according to estimates recorded by the World Peace Foundation’s Famine Trends Dataset.

Famine in the 21st Century

By comparison, the complex emergencies in contemporary Africa are demographically much less devastating affairs, their effects mitigated by increasingly proficient humanitarian relief efforts. By the early 2000s, scholars of famine were predicting that their subject matter was fast becoming consigned to history. But in the last two years, famine has made a comeback.

As famine makes an unsettling return, the global spotlight on migration nods to its potential implications for population displacement and migration governance. The final text of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly, and Regular Migration due to be approved by most UN Member States in December acknowledges food insecurity both as one of several adverse drivers of migration whose effects need to be minimized (Objective 2.b) and as a rights violation to be avoided during migrants’ detention (Objective 13.f). Yet famines—food crises that cause elevated mortality over a specific period of time—are distinct from the food insecurity and hunger characterized by underdevelopment. The Global Compact’s perfunctory mention of food insecurity belies the fact that surprisingly little is known about the connection between acute food crises and population mobility. If famines are indeed making a return, this is a critically important question for policymakers.

The State of Current Research

Which people are most likely to migrate during a famine? Where do they go and for how long? Does migration mitigate starvation or worsen it? What factors determine its effectiveness as an escape? And how do conflict, politics, and political instability complicate the relationship between famine and population movements? To pose the question within a more concrete context: with the ongoing war in Yemen, for instance, what might be the humanitarian and development implications of famine-induced migration for the Middle East and Europe?

A systematic review of the relevant literature reveals that we are frighteningly ill-equipped to answer these questions. A Google Scholar search for the terms “famine” AND “migration” yields around 150,000 results. But a closer look at the quality of those results reveals only a handful are relevant to the subject. Tellingly, when the search is focused on databases of peer-reviewed publications and its parameters narrowed to home in on clear and specific examinations of the connection between famine and migration, just 35 articles, books, and chapters (8 percent of overall results) make the cut. And even among these, the variability in methods and scope is so vast that only the most tenuous of generalizations can be made. Scholars are overwhelmingly focused on the impact famine has on mortality, fertility, and refugee assistance, and not the how, when, who, and so what of the famine-migration nexus.

Most writing on the demographic and socioeconomic consequences of famine makes the commonsensical assumption that hunger compels people to leave their homes, villages, and towns. But the conclusions are far too broad and generalized to be of practical relevance for policymakers or humanitarian practitioners. Leading authorities on famine including David Arnold, Tim Dyson, and Cormac Ó Gráda only go so far as to say that migration:

Is both a response to and an indicator of famine; modern improvements in transport and communications have potentially increased its viability as a means of escape from starvation
Is mostly short-term and local (to urban areas)
Can have either positive or negative net mortality effects—the latter by adding to physical weakness conducive for the transmission of communicable diseases—but as economies have diversified and transportation improved, it likely has a beneficial effect overall
Is age and sex-selective. Conventional wisdom assumes young men, seen as less vulnerable on the road, are more likely to migrate and seek employment or aid elsewhere, while women remain to care for the home.
However, a literature review by the authors of this article shows that these generalizations are not based on an inductive comparison of findings across a wide range of cases. The current state of research does not allow them to be. Just a handful of historical famines and their migratory dynamics—most notably Ireland and some other 19th century European and South Asian famines—have been studied with significantly more rigor than others. And these studies’ findings do not always correspond to the points above. Famines and their patterns of migration depend upon the specific socioeconomic context, levels of infrastructure and technology, and the decisions of political and military leaders. War-famines are conspicuously under-researched—but these are the most common kind faced today. The lack of uniform and systematic research across cases at the aggregate level is thus compounded by the complexity of socioeconomic and political forces shaping the famine-migration nexus.

The Irish and Other Famine Migrations

Undoubtedly the most well documented and extensively researched case of a famine migration is that of the Great Irish Famine. The emigration of 2 million Irish between 1845-52 was predominantly long distance (to the United States and Canada) and permanent. Social and economic historians and demographers have researched this calamity in unparalleled detail. They ask why some Irish counties experienced greater levels of outmigration than others, what the trans-Atlantic passage to America was like, how did family and friends abroad facilitate mobility, and whether political authorities could have done more to facilitate migration as a form of relief.

Studies of other cases are sparser or deal with narrow aspects of the famine-migration nexus. India is blessed with exceptionally good population statistics dating back to the mid-19th century, making it a favorite focus for demographic research. Data on migration during famines such as Bombay (1876-78), Madras (1877-78), and Punjab (1896-97), are used to answer questions about the number of people killed by disease or hunger and about the effect on fertility. But with the exception of Christopher Hill’s study of British famine policy in colonial north India and its effect on peasants’ migration, scholars have paid next to no attention to the kinds of questions asked in the Irish case. Meanwhile, handicapped by poor data and mostly reliant on village-level studies, most research into African food crises focuses on questions of household livelihoods.

Politics is the often-missing link in the research agenda. Government policies are often to blame for creating or exacerbating famines, and are also the determining factor in what kind of migration is feasible. Thus, the lack of political support for publicly assisted emigration during the Great Irish Famine’s worst years—a dearth partially fueled by anti-Irish prejudice in Britain—meant that the most vulnerable were the least able to escape. And during the 1867-69 famine in the present-day Estonia, the regional government in fact increased restrictions on peasants’ mobility because population movement was not in landowners’ best interests. Turning to the more recent case of the Ethiopian famine of 1983-85, forced population transfers under the guise of food relief were a key feature of the counterinsurgency strategy of the military regime against rebels in the northern provinces of Tigray and Wollo. This state-led restrictive management of mobility did little to alleviate starvation while some external donors’ relief efforts unwittingly abetted forced resettlement. From the authors’ review, the politics of famine migration is however the least deliberately and uniformly studied aspect of the issue.

Different Patterns of Migration

Patterns of famine-related migration are even more complex than these cases imply. The different causal sequences that lead to famine also contribute to different patterns of migration. The mobility of the hungry is influenced strongly by the structure of rural livelihoods and varies according to the causes of the famine. For instance, places subject to recurrent food insecurity and famine, such as Sudan and the West African Sahel, have witnessed long-term trends of migration away from ecologically marginal areas on the desert edge to more productive areas further south, and from rural areas to cities. Such movements are not always limited by state borders, and communities and individuals also migrate transnationally in search of sustainable livelihoods. Literature on the Sahelian famine of the 1970s and among the pastoralist Afar and Somali of Ethiopia details how sedenterization of formerly nomadic peoples—a change in movement patterns rather than migration—resulted in the deprivation of a traditionally autonomous society. For the Gogo of Tanzania, colonial polices such as labor conscription stripped traditional agrarian societies of their autonomous ability to deal with the risk of food shortages.

Modern-day, state-led counterinsurgency strategies also act as drivers of displacement and traumatizing accelerants of urbanization. Military strategies selectively inflict hunger, whether deliberately or as collateral damage, through the control of food and other humanitarian aid. In Yemen, Mundy’s analysis of Saudi coalition attacks since March 2015 finds a systematic shift away from military targets towards economic ones, including farms, which cover less than 3 percent of the country’s land surface. Between March 2015 and August 2016, farms followed by livestock were the most frequent agricultural targets, with Sa’da governate—the Houthis’ home base—being most severely hit. Combine this with blockades of the main port at Al-Hudayda (which receives the bulk of humanitarian and commercial shipments), the sealing-off of Sanaa airport, and relocation of the central bank to Aden (which means government employees in areas controlled by the rebels no longer get paid), and a clear strategy to starve into submission emerges. Sometimes hunger is used as a weapon to force people to flee (as in South Sudan today), sometimes to keep them in place to force them to surrender (as in the besieged enclaves of Syria, or the militant-held areas of northeastern Nigeria), or a combination of the two (as in Yemen today). However, although this topic is generating media coverage and bouts of public angst, the academy—limited by its disciplinary silos—has yet to devote sustained attention to the famine-migration nexus. As in the case of other pressing issues, famine demographers, analysts of rural livelihoods, migration specialists, and scholars of conflict struggle to meaningfully acknowledge and integrate one another’s work into their own.

A Pressing Need for an Evidence-Based Humanitarian and Policy Response

Not nearly enough is known about the intersection of famine and migration. One can predict that it is fast becoming a pressing humanitarian and political concern. Furthermore, it is increasingly clear that the narrow and often managerial treatment of food insecurity as an adverse driver of migration within global development and humanitarian policy fails to address the key political aspects of modern famines and related mass-distress migration. The understanding of contemporary famine has shifted from a focus on food availability or access to politics and policies. Work by (among others) Stephen Devereux, David Keen, and Alex de Waal shows that disruptions in food supply or access, climate change, and natural disasters are themselves insufficient conditions for a famine to occur. Famines strike when a political decision, by way of an act of commission or omission, creates one (see Figure 2). Migration—whether voluntary or forced, internal or international—is likewise shaped by the political context within which it occurs.

The international regimes for responding to famine and to forced migration are ill-matched. The standard relief program regards those who have migrated from hunger as short-term displaced people in need of food and shelter until they can return home when matters improve. Relief workers do not see their job as assisting in longer-term processes of urbanization or outmigration, and still less are they equipped to deal with the political causes of starvation. This may be starting to change: UN Security Council Resolution 2417, adopted in May 2018, condemns the use of starvation of civilians as an unlawful war tactic. Meanwhile, a classical understanding of the 1951 Refugee Convention would not yield a sympathetic outcome for persons fleeing famine or food deprivation, especially if the politics which determine who starves and who must flee are not acknowledged by the international community, specifically host governments and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). If climate change contributes to food crises and distress migration—and also fuels the malign and xenophobic politics that worsen these two problems—governments may find their legal and policy tools even more poorly suited to the challenges ahead.

Review of what is known—and what must be known—about the famine-migration nexus turns up an astonishing scarcity of rigorous scholarly research in this field. As famines appear again, one can only conclude with a cri de coeur: This is an urgent topic about which we know far too little.

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World: Humanitarian Funding Update October 2018 – United Nations Coordinated Appeals

Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Country: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Senegal, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), World, Yemen

United Nations-coordinated Appeals

FUNDING REQUIRED $25.20B

FUNDING RECEIVED $11.97B

UNMET REQUIREMENTS $13.23B

COVERAGE 47.5%

PEOPLE IN NEED 135.3 M

PEOPLE TO RECEIVE AID 97.9 M

COUNTRIES AFFECTED 41

Global Humanitarian Funding

FUNDING RECEIVED $17.98B

UN-COORDINATED APPEALS $11.97B

OTHER FUNDING $6.01B

Global Appeal Status

  • At the end of October 2018, 21 Humanitarian Response Plans (HRP) and the Syria Regional Response Plan (3RP) require US$25.20 billion to assist 97.9 million people in urgent need of humanitarian support. The plans are funded at $11.97 billion; this amounts to 47.5 per cent of financial requirements for 2018. Requirements are lower than in September 2018 due to revision of the Ethiopia Humanitarian and Disaster Resilience Plan (HDRP). For the remainder of 2018, humanitarian organizations require another $13.23 billion to meet the needs outlined in these plans.

  • Global requirements are $1.10 billion higher than at this time last year. Overall coverage and the dollar amount were only marginally higher in late October than at the same time in 2017.

  • On 8 October the Government of Ethiopia and humanitarian partners issued a Mid-Year Review of the HDRP. The revised plan reflects changes in the humanitarian context, and requires $1.49 billion for 2018, as opposed to the March 2018 requirement of $1.6 billion to reach some 7.88 million people in need of food or cash relief assistance and 8.49 million people with non-food assistance in the course of the year. Despite the general good performance of this year’s belg (spring) rains, the number of people targeted for relief food and cash support remains largely unchanged due to the significant spike in internal displacement since April 2018.

Security Council Briefings and High Level Missions

  • At a briefing to the Security Council on 23 October, Under-Secretary-General/Emergency Relief Coordinator (USG/ERC) Mark Lowcock called on all stakeholders to do everything possible to avert catastrophe in Yemen. In a follow up note on the humanitarian situation in Yemen of 30 October, the USG/ERC thanked the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, United States, Kuwait, the United Kingdom and all donors for the record amount raised for the humanitarian appeal in 2018 which had meant nearly 8 million people had received assistance across the country; more than 7 million people had received food and more than 420,000 children been treated for malnutrition; clean water, sanitation and basic hygiene support is now available to 7.4 million people and about 8 million men, women, girls and boys had benefited from health services.

  • At a Security Council briefing on the humanitarian situation in Syria on 29 October, the USG/ERC urged the Security Council and key Member States to ensure that the ceasefire holds in Syria's northwestern province of Idlib to prevent a military onslaught and overwhelming humanitarian suffering. He thanked donors for the $1.7 billion contributed so far towards the HRP for Syria, but pointed out that this HRP is currently funded at less than 50 per cent.

  • In her statement to the Security Council on 30 October, Assistant Under-Secretary-General/Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator (ASG/DERC)
    Ursulla Mueller spoke of the steady decline in humanitarian funding for the Ukraine over the years and mentioned that the HRP for 2018 is funded at only 32 per cent. This is simply not enough to cover food, health care, water, sanitation and other life-saving assistance. ASG/DERC Mueller appealed to donors to increase their support for consolidating gains in anticipation of the fast-approaching winter.

  • During a joint mission to Chad and Nigeria (5-7 October) with UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner, as part of a series of country visits the two will make to advance humanitarian-development collaboration, the USG/ERC called on donors to fulfil pledges and announcements of over $2 million made in Berlin last month at the High Level Conference on the Lake Chad Region (3-4 September). He noted the importance of maintaining humanitarian response in the region as needs were still very high.

  • Following her visit to the Republic of the Philippines from 9 to 11 October, ASG/DERC Mueller announced that OCHA would continue advocating for sustained funding to address humanitarian needs of people displaced by the Marawi conflict while ensuring that support for the transition to longerterm and sustainable recovery is forthcoming.

Upcoming Event

  • The Global Humanitarian Overview 2019 and World Humanitarian Data and Trends will be launched in the course of joint event to take place in the Palais des Nations, Geneva, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on 4 December 2018.

Pooled Funds

  • Between January and the end of October 2018, country-based pooled funds (CBPFs) have received a total of $708 million in contributions from 32 donors (including contributions through the UN Foundation). During the same period, a total of $616 million from the 18 operational funds was allocated towards 1,071 projects with 575 implementing partners. Nearly 40 per cent ($246 million) of the funds were allocated to international NGOs and some 26 per cent (approximately $160 million) to national NGOs. UN agencies received 32 per cent ($202 million) of the allocated funds and Red Cross/Red Crescent organizations received over 1 per cent (some $8 million) of all allocated funds. The largest allocations per sector went to health; food security; water, sanitation and hygiene; nutrition; emergency shelter and NFIs.

  • Between 1 January and 31 October 2018, the Emergency Relief Coordinator approved $477 million in grants from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) to support life-saving activities in 45 countries. This includes $297.7 million from the Rapid Response Window and $179.7 million from the Underfunded Emergencies (UFE) Window. A total of $31.6 million in Rapid Response grants was approved in October in response to cholera outbreaks in Zimbabwe, Niger and Nigeria; flooding in Laos; and the population influx from Venezuela to Brazil, Ecuador and Peru; as well as to support Government relief efforts following the earthquake and tsunami in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. The UFE 2018 second round was completed this month, with $30.6 million approved in September and the remaining $49.4 million of the round’s $80 million released in October to assist people caught up in nine chronic emergencies in Angola, Bangladesh, Burundi, Central African Republic, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Libya,
    Republic of Congo, Rwanda and Sudan.

Country Updates

  • Funding for humanitarian activities in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) is at an all-time low. Nearly all agencies requesting financial support through the HRP have received less funding in 2018 than in previous years. This leaves humanitarian partners ill-placed to meet emerging needs or respond to the deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Gaza, where the rise in casualties during the recent demonstrations has stretched Gaza’s overburdened health system.
    Humanitarian agencies appealed in August for $43.8 million to respond to the Gaza crisis, particularly trauma management and emergency health care, in 2018. On 22 September, the Humanitarian Coordinator for the oPt launched an $8.3 million allocation from the oPt Humanitarian Fund to implement critical HRP projects, mainly in Gaza. Stocks of medical supplies are in extremely short supply and depleted to almost half of requirements. Since late October, the Gaza power plant has been providing up to eleven hours of electricity a day. However, around 250 health,
    WASH and essential solid waste facilities continue to rely on UN-procured emergency fuel for running back-up generators. This year’s intensive operations have depleted funds and stocks and the $1 million allocated by the oPt Humanitarian Fund for fuel supplies will only last until the end of November. Further and urgent financial support is therefore required.

  • Conditions in Yemen continued to deteriorate in October, pushing the country to the brink of famine. On 23 October, the USG/ERC warned the Security Council that without urgent action, up to 14 million people – half the population – could face pre-famine conditions in the coming months.
    Assessments are currently under way, with initial results expected in mid-November. The economic crisis is raising the risk of famine. The Yemeni rial has depreciated by nearly 50 per cent over the last year. Commodity prices have soared, as Yemen imports 90 per cent of staple food and nearly all fuel and medicine.

Urgent steps are required to avert immediate catastrophe. First, a cessation of hostilities is needed; this is especially critical in populated areas.
Second, imports of food, fuel and other essentials must be able to enter Yemen without impediment. Roads must remain open so these goods can reach communities across the country. Third, the Yemeni economy must be supported, including by injecting foreign exchange, expediting credit for imports and paying salaries and pensions. Fourth, international funding must increase now to allow humanitarians to meet growing needs for assistance. Finally, all parties must engage with the UN Special Envoy to end the conflict. Yemen remains the largest humanitarian operation in the world, with more than 200 partners working through the Yemen HRP.

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