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Somalia: Somalia Factsheet June 2016

22 July 2016 - 7:02am
Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees Country: Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Yemen

HIGHLIGHTS

32,624 Arrivals from Yemen since 27 March 2015

17,000 Refugee returnees from Kenya since 8 December 2014

120,809 Evictions in Mogadishu since January 2015

591,224 New displacements since January 2015

WORKING WITH PARTNERS

As part of the UN integrated mission to Somalia (UNSOM), UNHCR maintains close collaboration with UN agencies, local and international NGOs and Somali authorities at country and field levels in a joint effort to provide assistance and durable solutions to the people of Somalia.

As a lead agency of the Protection and Shelter/NFI Clusters, and the implementation of the Protection and Return Monitoring Network (PRMN), UNHCR spearheads productive partnerships with over 60 national and international NGOs.

Since 2012, UNHCR leads the Somalia Return Consortium, a group of nine UN agencies and NGOs providing coordinated and standardized assistance to IDPs who opt to return and reintegrate in their areas of origin to end displacement.

To coordinate effective response to the Yemen crisis, UNHCR and IOM co-lead a country-level inter-agency Task Force on Yemen Situation.

Somalia: Somalia Task Force on Yemen Situation: Inter-Agency Update #13 (1 July - 15 July 2016)

22 July 2016 - 6:45am
Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees Country: Ethiopia, Somalia, Yemen

KEY FIGURES

32,713 Arrivals from Yemen since 27 March 2015, at the early onset of the crisis

7,015 Yemenis registered in Somalia since 27 March 2015 (including Somalis with dual Yemeni-Somali citizenship)

20,575 Arrivals registered at Reception Centres in Berbera, Bossaso and Mogadishu since 27 March 2015

52% Registered arrivals expressing intention to return to Mogadishu

9,992 Somali returnees provided with onward transportation assistance since 27 March 2015

FUNDING

USD 39.3 million Requested for the Somalia Response Plan for Yemen Crisis (January - December 2016)

Highlights

  • During the reporting period, there has been three boat arrivals from Yemen to Somalia, in Puntland (14 Yemeni, 74 Somali and 1 Ethiopian) carrying a total of 89 individuals.

  • Of the new arrivals, 60 went to the Bossaso reception center and were registered by UNHCR in direct collaboration with local authorities and partners.

France: Paris dismantles camp housing over 2,600 migrants

22 July 2016 - 5:56am
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Afghanistan, Eritrea, France, Somalia, World

Paris, France | AFP | Friday 7/22/2016 - 09:29 GMT

Police in Paris on Friday dismantled a tent camp under a railway housing over 2,600 people mainly from Afghanistan and east Africa, part of an ongoing drive to remove camps sprouting up around the French capital.

The operation in northern Paris was the 26th of its kind over the past year in the city, which is struggling to accommodate asylum-seekers.

Many hundreds of people, mainly men from Eritrea, Somalia and Afghanistan, had been living in tents or sleeping rough on mattresses on a strip of ground underneath an elevated railway.

The number of migrants sleeping rough had initially been believed to be lower, and only 1,400 places were immediately available in reception centres.

Among the 2,628 migrants evacuated on Friday were 153 women and children, police said in a statement.

Due to a shortage of places in formal reception centres, the authorities resorted to temporarily housing some of the people in three gyms and a retirement home.

Last weekend, riot police intervened at the site to break up a fight between some of the camp's occupants.

The head of the French Immigration and Integration Office, Didier Leschi, said some were passing through France and were planning to seek asylum in other European countries.

Others, however, had already been granted asylum in France "but cannot find work and don't know where to live".

"It's very hard, we don't have blankets, showers or toilets," Mahamat Moussa, a 19-year-old from Chad who arrived in France nearly a year ago, and has sleeping rough in the makeshift camp ever since.

  • Shortage of accommodation -

Migrant support groups complain of a dire shortage of accommodation for asylum-seekers, saying the 20,000 spaces created in the past two years are insufficient in the face of a constant stream of new arrivals.

Over the past year, squalid camps have repeatedly cropped up in northern Paris -- with the police intervening each time to dismantle them.

In May, the city's mayor Anne Hidalgo announced plans to create a refugee camp with proper facilities, scheduled to be up and running in September.

The other main destination in France for refugees and migrants is the northern port of Calais, where thousands of people are camped out in the hope of stowing away in a truck bound for Britain.

Pierre Henry, head of France Terre d'Asile, a charity that helps refugees and asylum-seekers, called for other French cities to take steps to provide their own refugee accommodation.

"We need (accommodation) centres in all the regional capitals, to receive the refugees and help them get their bearings, so that people are not drawn just to Paris and Calais," he said.

bur/ser/har

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

France: Paris dismantles camp housing over 1,000 migrants

22 July 2016 - 5:56am
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Afghanistan, Eritrea, France, Somalia, World

Paris, France | AFP | Friday 7/22/2016 - 09:29 GMT

Police in Paris on Friday dismantled a tented camp under a railway housing over 1,000 people from Afghanistan and east Africa, part of an ongoing move to clear camps sprouting up around the French capital.

The operation in northern Paris was the 26th of its kind over the past year in the city, which is struggling to accommodate asylum seekers.

Between 1,200 and 1,400 people, mainly men from Eritrea, Somalia and Afghanistan, had been living in tents or sleeping rough on mattresses on a strip of ground underneath an elevated railway.

They were taken by bus to reception centres around the country.

Last weekend, riot police intervened at the site to break up a fight between some of the camp's occupants.

The head of the French Immigration and Integration Office, Didier Leschi, said some were passing through France and were planning to seek asylum in other European countries.

Others, however, had already been granted asylum in France "but cannot find work and don't know where to live."

Migrant support groups complain of a dire shortage of accommodation for asylum-seekers, saying the 20,000 spaces created in the past two years are insufficient in the face of a constant stream of new arrivals.

Over the past year, squalid camps have repeatedly cropped up in northern Paris -- with the police intervening each time to dismantle them.

In May, the city's mayor Anne Hidalgo announced plans to create a refugee camp with proper facilities, scheduled to be up and running in September.

The other main destination in France for refugees and migrants is the northern port of Calais, where thousands of people are camped out in the hope of stowing away in a truck bound for Britain.

Pierre Henry, head of France Terre d'Asile, a charity that helps refugees and asylum seekers, called for other French cities to step up to the plate.

"We need (accommodation) centres in all the regional capitals, to receive the refugees and help them get their bearings, so that people are not drawn just to Paris and Calais," he said.

Somalia: SRSG Zerrougui calls for better protection of children affected by armed conflict

22 July 2016 - 5:32am
Source: United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia Country: Somalia

The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General (SRSG) for Children and Armed Conflict Leila Zerrougui has concluded a six-day visit to Somalia, where she made a plea for better protection of children caught up in armed conflict.

Addressing a press conference in Mogadishu today at the end of her visit, SRSG Zerrougui expressed optimism over the efforts of the Federal Government of Somalia and authorities in Puntland to improve the conditions of children in armed conflict.

“We need not only to get them out of death row, we need to give them to child protection actors and to work with them, if some need psycho-social treatment, if they need to be helped to return to the community,” said SRSG Zerrougui. “Whatever we can do, we can work together on that and assure the Government and the authorities that we will do our best to support their initiative.”

The SRSG visited children in detention centres in Garowe and Bossaso, and she urged authorities throughout Somalia to treat captured children as victims and not as criminals.

“I would like to emphasise the importance of the reintegration. When something wrong happens we need to make sure that we fix the problem and deal with the children in a way that when they return to the community, they are not stigmatised, they are not abused and they are not left on the streets,” she stressed.

She called on authorities to integrate into the community former child soldiers and address stigmatization and abuse of underage victims of violence.

In March, Puntland security forces captured and detained dozens of child soldiers after defeating an attempted incursion by Al-Shabaab militants.

During her visit to Puntland, SRSG Zerrougui met with President Abdiweli Mohamed Ali Gaas, the Vice President, the Minister of Justice, judges, and prosecutors.

She said she obtained assurances from Puntland authorities that 12 child soldiers who were captured and later sentenced to death will not be executed.

Ms. Zerrougui held talks in Mogadishu with senior federal government officials, including Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, the federal ministers of defence and internal security, and representatives of Civil Society Organisations engaged in child protection.

The SRSG’s visit to Somalia comes ahead of the presentation of the annual report of the UN Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict, which is due on 2 August 2016.

World: Mediterranean Update, Migration Flows Europe: Arrivals and Fatalities: 22 July 2016

22 July 2016 - 4:24am
Source: International Organization for Migration Country: Afghanistan, Bulgaria, Chile, Costa Rica, Côte d'Ivoire, Cyprus, Eritrea, Gambia, Greece, Guinea, Hungary, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Iraq, Italy, Mali, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Serbia, Somalia, Spain, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, United States of America, World

242,179 arrivals by sea in 2016
2,977 dead/missing
published 07:30 CET 22 July
1,011,712 arrivals in 2015

World: Humanitarian assistance to African countries

22 July 2016 - 3:51am
Source: Government of Australia Country: Australia, Cameroon, Chad, Niger, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, World

The humanitarian crisis in South Sudan, Somalia and countries in the Lake Chad basin is worsening due to the effects of El Nino and conflict in the region.

Today I announce that the Australian Government will provide a further $17.5 million to support people suffering from severe hunger and malnutrition, and those displaced from their homes and in need of protection from conflict.

Australia will provide $8 million to the South Sudan Humanitarian Fund and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. This funding will help deliver food, shelter, security, and other vital assistance including to South Sudanese who have fled to neighbouring countries. This brings Australia’s total contribution to South Sudan to more than $50 million since December 2013.

In Somalia, 1.1 million people have been displaced by terrorist activity and conflict. Australia will provide $4.5 million to Somalia, including $2.5 million to World Vision to help build the resilience of Somali communities and $2 million to the Somalia Humanitarian Fund for immediate life-saving assistance, including food, healthcare and water.

Australia will also provide $5 million through the World Food Programme for immediate food supplies, livelihood training and nutrition in the Lake Chad basin region. Over 2.1 million people have been forced to flee their homes as a result of the Boko Haram insurgency and 7.5 million people are in need of urgent food assistance.

This assistance comes from humanitarian funding within the existing Australian Aid budget.

Media enquiries

Minister's office: (02) 6277 7500 DFAT Media Liaison: (02) 6261 1555

Somalia: One man’s terrorist is another man’s carpenter

22 July 2016 - 1:35am
Source: IRIN Country: Somalia

How DDR can shrink support for al-Shabab in Somalia

By Obi Anyadike
Editor-at-Large

MOGADISHU, 21 July 2016

What does a terrorist look like? No such archetype exists of course, but you certainly wouldn’t figure somebody like Mohammed Abdi*.

Read the full article on IRIN

Yemen: Yemen Crisis: IOM Regional Response - Situation Report, 1 - 30 June 2016

21 July 2016 - 10:50pm
Source: International Organization for Migration Country: Djibouti, Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen

Highlights

  • Since the beginning of the crisis, IOM has assisted over 73,000 IDPs in Abyan, Aden, Al Dhale’e, Hadhramaut, Hajjah, Lahj, Al Mahrah, Sa’adah, Shabwah, Socotra and Taizz governorates with shelter and non-food item support.

  • In June, 773 migrants living with foster families or hosted at IOM’s Migrant Response Points in Al Hudaydah and Sana’a received daily food assistance from IOM. Since March 2015, IOM has provided nearly 8,000 migrants in Aden, Al Hudaydah, and Sana’a with daily food assistance.

  • Between 1 and 30 June, 214 individuals arrived from Yemen in Bosaso and Berbera, Somalia. As of 30 June 2016, 32,619 individuals fleeing the conflict in Yemen have arrived in Somalia.

Situation Overview

Peace talks continued in Kuwait throughout June 2016. The parties used the Eid holiday to return home for consultations and prepare for a new round of talks, which is scheduled to start in Kuwait on 15 July.

Despite the ongoing ceasefire, fighting continues. In late June, airstrikes were reported in Sana’a, Abyan, Shabwah, and Lahj. Main entrances leading to Taizz governorate remain blocked, preventing aid from entering the Taizz enclave in particular Salah, Mudhaffar, and Al Qahira districts.

The 9th Task Force on Population Movement (TFPM) Report was released on 31 May 2016. This report indicates an IDP population of over 2.8 million individuals, with a further 750,000 individuals identified as IDP returnees who were previously displaced due to conflict. The north western region of Yemen (Amanat Al Asimah, Hajjah, Sa’adah, Sana’a, and Taizz governorates) remains the area with the largest IDP population.

Djibouti: ECHO Factsheet – Djibouti – July 2016

21 July 2016 - 10:21pm
Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid Office Country: Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia, Yemen
Facts & Figures

Close to 40 000 people fleeing the Yemen conflict have taken refuge in Djibouti

55% of arrivals are Yemeni. Others are mainly Somali, Eritrean & Ethiopian nationals

Other facts
  • 74% of people live on less than $3 per day

  • Life expectancy: 58 years

  • 6% of children under 5 are severely acutely malnourished

Sources: WFP, IOM UNICEF, UNHCR.

European Commission Humanitarian Aid funding:

Total since 2012: over €6 million

2016: €1.5 million

Key messages
  • The priority of EU humanitarian aid in Djibouti is to provide life-saving assistance to refugees and look for durable solutions to their plight.

  • Djibouti hosts over 17 000 long-term refugees and asylum seekers mainly from Somalia* whose basic needs such as shelter, water and protection need to be catered for. Some 3 000 Yemeni refugees are still present in Djibouti following the 2015 crisis in Yemen.

  • Djibouti imports 95% of its food. The number of people at risk of hunger has increased since the 2011 drought, accelerating the rural exodus to urban areas. A combination of high food prices, water scarcity, climate change and reduced pasture has increased food insecurity. This year’s El Niño has led to even dryer weather.

  • Humanitarian funding from the European Commission provides refugees with access to clean water and sanitation as well as shelter, protection, nutrition and health care. Food assistance is given in the form of cash transfers as a way of promoting refugees’ self-reliance.

Yemen: Yemen Complex Emergency Fact Sheet #13 Fiscal Year (FY) 2016

21 July 2016 - 7:35pm
Source: US Agency for International Development Country: Somalia, United States of America, Yemen
Highlights
  • Peace negotiations resume in Kuwait following two-week consultation phase.
  • Fuel imports decrease in June, fulfill only 25 percent of monthly needs.
  • Relief organizations continue to report security concerns, particularly in Aden and Ta’izz.
Key Developments
  • UN Special Envoy for Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed and Yemeni delegates resumed Kuwait-based peace negotiations on July 16; the resumption follows a consultative period between July 1 and 15 that allowed delegations to meet with respective leaders and the UN Special Envoy to meet with key stakeholders.
  • During the two-week pause, the UN Special Envoy convened meetings with Republic of Yemen Government (RoYG) President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation Council Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani, and other government officials and stakeholders in Oman, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen to discuss security, political, economic, and humanitarian issues and urge support for a comprehensive solution to the ongoing conflict. The UN Special Envoy reports the restarted peace talks will continue for two weeks, focusing on the consolidation of the cessation of hostilities (CoH) agreement, activation of the De-escalation and Coordination Committee (DCC), the formation of the military committees that will supervise the withdrawal and handing over of weapons, and the opening of secure humanitarian assistance corridors.
  • In June, Yemen imported only 25 percent of its monthly fuel requirement, a decrease from 30 percent in May, according to the Logistics Cluster—the coordinating body for humanitarian logistics activities, comprising UN agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and other stakeholders. Despite humanitarian constraints between late June and mid-July, including insecurity and insufficient fuel imports, relief organizations continued delivering assistance to populations in need across Yemen. In recent weeks, USAID/OFDA partners provided emergency health, nutrition, and water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) assistance across seven governorates, and USAID/FFP partner the UN World Food Program (WFP) reached more than 3.5 million people with general food distributions in June.

Iraq: Netherlands wants to eradicate landmines within 10 years

21 July 2016 - 3:23pm
Source: Government of the Netherlands Country: Afghanistan, Colombia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, Mali, Netherlands, occupied Palestinian territory, Serbia, Somalia, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine

Every day, 10 people are killed by landmines. Besides claiming such a substantial number of lives, landmines form an obstacle to post-conflict reconstruction efforts. Foreign trade and development cooperation minister Lilianne Ploumen said: ‘The devastating impact of landmines doesn’t stop when the violence ends. Emergency workers are left unable to reach the places where they’re needed, refugees can’t return home and farmers can’t access their land. Before peace and stability can return, these deadly things have to be cleared away.’ This is why the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is supporting 3 major demining projects in 13 countries.

Every day, 10 people are killed by landmines. Besides claiming such a substantial number of lives, landmines form an obstacle to post-conflict reconstruction efforts. Foreign trade and development cooperation minister Lilianne Ploumen said: ‘The devastating impact of landmines doesn’t stop when the violence ends. Emergency workers are left unable to reach the places where they’re needed, refugees can’t return home and farmers can’t access their land. Before peace and stability can return, these deadly things have to be cleared away.’ This is why the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is supporting 3 major demining projects in 13 countries.

The Netherlands is one of the largest donors when it comes to demining, and wants to see landmines eradicated within 10 years. In the last 4 years almost 52 million m2 of land have been demined thanks to the Netherlands, and more than 2 million people have been educated about the dangers of landmines. More than 5,000 families have received victim support, 114 ambulances were purchased and 425 nurses trained to care for landmine victims.

The new demining projects announced today will focus on researching and demining landmine areas, supporting victims and their families, and providing education. Projects are being launched in Afghanistan, Colombia, DRC, Iraq, Kosovo, Lebanon, Libya, the Palestinian Territories, Mali, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria and Ukraine.

Demining is a priority for Ms Ploumen and foreign minister Bert Koenders. A total of 45 million euros has been made available for 3 demining projects run by The HALO Trust, Mines Advisory Group and Danish Church Aid, 10 million euros of which is earmarked for acute demining in conflict zones like Iraq and Syria.

Yemen: Yemen Crisis Response: Movements and Arrival Assistance (As of 30 June 2016)

21 July 2016 - 1:33pm
Source: International Organization for Migration Country: Djibouti, Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen

Kenya: UNHCR Kenya Factsheet - June 2016

21 July 2016 - 11:54am
Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees Country: Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda
Highlights
  • 14,960
    identified unaccompanied Minors and Separated Children
  • 86
    households provided with cash grants since 1st January 2015
  • 1,288,598
    NFIs distributed since January 2015
  • 2,931
    shelters distributed since January 2015
Population of Concern

Total of people of concern 562,357

Funding

USD 226,880,884 requested

Highlights
  • UNHCR Chief Filippo Grandi visited Nairobi Office and Dadaab and Kakuma refugee camps for the first time as the High Commissioner for refugees. He met with refugees, host community representatives, government officials, UNHCR staff and partners.
  • The Tripartite Technical Committee met in Nairobi on June 25 and came up with the joint communiqué for voluntary return and sustainable repatriation of Somali refugees: http://bit.ly/28VOfDF
  • In June, UNHCR inactivated refugees and asylum seekers who have not collected food rations or accessed other protection assistance in Kakuma for a long period of time, as it may be assumed that they are no longer present in the camps. As a result, the statistics for the Kakuma Refugee Camp population has decreased from 192,218 as at the end of May 2016, to the current figure of 156,923 at the end of June 2016. UNHCR will carry out a verification exercise in the near future to confirm the population of the camp and will report the updated figures as soon as possible.
  • On 14th June, UNHCR and partners organized a Market day in Dadaab as part of World Refugee Day commemoration themed “self-reliance/livelihoods, including the integration and enhancement of the economies of refugees and host communities”.
  • World Refugee Day, 20th June was marked in Dadaab, Kakuma and Nairobi jointly with refugees, Government representatives, host community, donors, partner agencies and UNHCR Staff.
  • On 16th June, the Day of the African Child was celebrated in the Dadaab, Kakuma and Nairobi.
  • ECHO mission visited Kakuma to check on the ECHO funded projects. The mission visited the Kalobeyei Settlement site and observed the relocation exercise at the reception centre, Bamba Chakula traders and met with partners.
  • A support mission from UNHCR Headquarters supported the roll-out of the Global Distribution Tool (GDT) process that is to be piloted in Kakuma in July Food distribution at Food Distribution Centre 4.
  • UNHCR continued to conduct border monitoring visits to Nadapal along the Kenya-South Sudan border.
  • Kenya National Commission of Human Rights, alongside Kituo cha Sheria and Amnesty International, have challenged the Government’s directive which disbanded the Department of Refugee Affairs and the government’s intention to close Dadaab Refugee camp. The case has also challenged the revocation of prima facie status for Somali refugees vide Gazette Notice 3017 of 2016.
  • Protection Delivery Unit facilitated travel to Geneva for four refugee youth to participate in the NGO annual Global Refugee Youth Consultations.

World: Rapport sur le Conseil de paix et de sécurité 82, juillet 2016

21 July 2016 - 11:23am
Source: Institute for Security Studies Country: Burundi, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Guinea-Bissau, Libya, Mozambique, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda, Western Sahara, World

Dans ce numéro

■ Coup de projecteur sur le 27e Sommet de l’UA Les droits des femmes et les élections à la Commission de l’Union africaine (CUA) sont en tête de l’ordre du jour du prochain sommet de l’UA qui se tiendra du 10 au 18 juillet 2016 à Kigali.
Les candidats pour le poste de président de la CUA font campagne en vue des élections.
Le président de la CUA a assumé au cours des années un nombre croissant de responsabilités afi n d’impulser des changements en Afrique.
■ Analyse de situation L’UA a la lourde responsabilité de mettre fi n au fl éau que sont Joseph Kony et l’Armée de résistance du Seigneur.

Vues d’Addis
Au cours des six premiers mois de l’année 2016, le PSC a examiné les nombreux confl its qui continuent d’affl iger certains pays africains comme le Burundi, la Somalie, la Guinée Bissau et le Soudan du Sud.

World: Building a Resilient Foundation for Peace and Development - Local Governance in Fragile and Conflict-Affected Settings

21 July 2016 - 10:28am
Source: UN Development Programme Country: Colombia, El Salvador, Liberia, Mozambique, Somalia, Sri Lanka, World

The nature of fragility and conflict is increasingly complex and protracted. With short-term, security-focused policies proving ineffective and at times counterproductive, there is a growing recognition that multi-dimensional approaches are more attuned to helping restore a robust social contract between state and society, which is an essential foundation for durable peace and sustainable development.

As championed by UNDP, there is a growing realization at the global policy level that responsive local governments and inclusive local governance and local development arrangements are essential building blocks of peace and state legitimacy in contexts marked by the weakness, and sometimes plain absence, of a legitimate central authority. Essentially, the local level remains the natural place for engineering the recovery of societies deeply affected by violence and conflict, and for building the resilience of communities through inclusive governance arrangements that build legitimacy. Inclusive and accountable local governance can help restore social cohesion in divided communities, facilitate participation in public life, distribute resources and opportunities equitably, safeguard minority rights, and test new forms of decision making that blends formal and informal processes of representation and participation.

The challenges and risks associated with local governance programming in the immediate aftermath of conflict or in contexts of systematic fragility, high criminal violence or protracted conflict, remain immense. UNDP’s support to local governance in these settings needs to be guided by a set of options and a theory of change cognizant of the complex political economies that influence the pace and trajectory of development outcomes in such environments. The Guide on Local Governance in Fragile and Conflict affected Settings: Building a Resilient Foundation for Peace and Development is UNDP’s comprehensive effort to respond to these programming needs.

Somalia: I choose to go home

21 July 2016 - 9:24am
Source: Norwegian Refugee Council Country: Kenya, Somalia

Three Somali refugees speak out about their decision to leave Kenya, after spending more than a decade in the world’s largest refugee camp, Dadaab.

Fatiha, 19 years old

Dressed in blue, 19-year-old Fatiha is one of over 5,000 women and girls who are returning to Somalia from Dadaab refugee camp. The camp opened in 1992 and today hosts over 130,000 people. Traveling in three big buses belonging, the returning families have decided to begin a new life away from the refugee camps.

Fatiha was only 2 years old when she arrived in Dadaab 17 years ago. Her five bothers and two sisters were born after her in the camp. Being the eldest daughter, her younger siblings look up to her, especially in moments of uncertainty like this, when they do not know what lies ahead.

Yussuf, 56 years old

"I returned my ration card to UNHCR but I wish they could let me keep it as a souvenir," laughed Yussuf, who is preparing to leave Dadaab refugee camp after 15 years. One of his eight sons is remaining behind to finish secondary school. He also hopes that his son will be able to stay even longer to join university in Kenya.

Yussuf has used the information helpdesks managed by NRC and UNHCR in Kambioos to make his decision about returning home. "Your people have enabled refugees to make informed choices from the information on the voluntary repatriation process and how it is being coordinated, including information on the situation back in Somalia," said Yussuf.

"Once I arrive at my destination, I will identify an appropriate occupation to engage as a means to sustain my livelihood and feed my family. I have good business skills but getting sufficient capital remains a challenge."

Osman, 40 years old

Osman has spent 14 years in Dadaab camp, where 8 of his 10 children were born. As he boards the bus for Luuq, he hopes to return and farm his homeland, and produce enough food to feed his family and sell the surplus.

"My reason to quit Dadaab is anchored on a profound psychological effect that comes from feeling like a full citizen and not a refugee," said Osman. "When I cross the border I will leave the refugee tag behind. I look forward to this transformation. People used to be kind to us before, but now the attitude towards us has changed. People are becoming hostile. They do not like us. Being a refugee is demeaning, it makes us feel less human."

NRC is supporting Somali refugees returning home through its voluntary repatriation programme. This includes providing families with information, counselling and legal support. Providing families with information helps them make informed decisions about leaving the camp, and setting themselves up for a new life in Somalia.

Somalia: Somalia: will its refugee and displacement crises ever be solved?

21 July 2016 - 8:23am
Source: Peace Direct Country: Kenya, Somalia

A combination of human and natural disasters has generated a repeated wave of refugees in Somalia. Abdiwahab M. Ali and Badra Yusuf discuss how best to normalise their status and support integration.

Over the last two decades or so, the world has regarded Somalia as the most troubled region in the horn of Africa. The once peaceful and prosperous country is now plagued by conflict, violence and human rights abuses. A combination of human and natural disasters has generated a repeated waves of refugees.

UNHCR statistics show that, out of population of 12 million Somalis, nearly two million are either displaced within the country or have sought refuge elsewhere. The majority of these refugees and displaced people are young, disadvantaged families. This demographic, who were born and raised in camps and settlements, continue to struggle with normalising their status and integrating with the host community.

Kenya’s ‘send them-back’ rhetoric

The recent decision of the Kenyan government to shut down Dadaab refugee camp, just a few days before the World Humanitarian Summit, came as no surprise. This was not the first time that Kenya has taken such a decision.

In April 2015, while visiting Nyeri County in Kenya, DP William Ruto gave the UN High Commissioner for Refugees three months to send Dadaab refugees back to Somalia, by which he said that Kenya would forcefully return them. Such forced repatriation of Dadaab refugees would violate the International Resolution 2198 and its associated principles of voluntary returns. The announcement created an international outcry, with some believing that Kenya, like Turkey, is using migrants as bargaining chips in a bid to get more support from the international community.

Today, Dadaab is the world’s largest camp with around 350,000 people. If it were considered as a Kenyan city, it would be the third largest. And to the world, Dadaab is just a refugee camp, full of tarp-covered domes. But to those born and raised on UN rations, it is home. In his lengthy essay, Why I call Dadaab home, Asad Hussein recalls how, growing up in Ifo going to school sometimes on an empty stomach, his love of Kenya and how words like “Refugee” were regarded as an insult, but have now become part of his identity.

In November 2013, Kenya signed a tripartite agreement with Somalia and UNHCR, defining procedures and outlines for the voluntary repatriation of refugees. So far nearly 5,000 Somali refugees have voluntarily returned to Somalia and 4,500 more have signed up to return.

However, this has also generated many questions about the procedure. Is Somalia ready for such an influx of refugees? Even in the context of voluntary return, the prospects for local integration and resettlement require a national and international strategy guided by long term solutions.

Redefining the status quo

With over a million people internally displaced across the country, additional refugees from Dadaab could surely overwhelm Somalia. The following ideas might help us secure a better, durable solution for IDPs and refugees:

Political will: the situation of refugees requires a political commitment by the Somali government to promoting the rights and the dignity of its displaced populations. The presence of a strong national leadership, effective coordination structures and response models that go beyond emergency humanitarian assistance are as necessary as ever. In the absence of national policy frameworks to support formalised and institutionalised systems, both national and international players need to take appropriate measures to come up with a cohesive and participatory sustainable assistance strategy that promotes the efforts of linking development strategies with durable solutions.

Local participation and inclusivity: the rights of displaced people, irrespective of sex, age and clan, must be promoted. The solutions need to be driven locally and reflect the diversity in displacements patterns and human needs. In addition, discussions on displaced people and refugees need to be all-inclusive and human centered. A comprehensive decision making process, in collaboration with those most affected by the crisis, especially youth and women, needs to be created. They should be able to participate in the planning and delivery of both current and future interventions.

Engaging the private sector: in the absence of strong public institutions, Somalia’s private sector, particularly in the telecommunications, remittance, business and livestock spheres, has played a critical role in providing basic social services and thus shaping the lives of many. However, the Somali business community has also hindered reconciliation efforts, by financing warring sides and militias to manage the risks to their businesses. In this case, any kind of engagement - be it humanitarian or developmental - needs to be considered and planned thoroughly.

Bottom-up approach: a community based approach that facilitates the participation of the displaced people is key when designing durable solutions, recovery and development strategies. Both humanitarian and development programmes need to drive opportunities that can benefit local economies, enhance community strengthen and create self-reliance. Refugees and IDPs should be at the center of stabilisation, peace and state building efforts in Somalia. If we are to secure sustainable solutions, then humanitarian and developmental actors and the public and private sectors must all work together towards a common goal. Only then will Somalia be a better place for future generations.

Sudan: Germany Supports WFP Assistance To Migrants And Vulnerable Families In Eastern Sudan

20 July 2016 - 3:52pm
Source: World Food Programme Country: Eritrea, Ethiopia, Germany, Somalia, Sudan

KHARTOUM – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) today welcomed a contribution of €10 million (approximately US$11.1 million) from the Government of Germany to support nearly 350,000 people in the eastern Sudan state of Kassala.

WFP will use the funds to provide food assistance to more than 88,400 refugees, migrants and asylum seekers from Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia as well as members of their host communities, through general food distributions and food vouchers for one year.

“We are grateful to the German Government and people for this contribution which enables us to provide a package of assistance to vulnerable families in Kassala State,” said WFP Representative and Country Director Adnan Khan. “Refugees and asylum seekers have little to no means of securing their needs. Host communities have also been over-stretched and need support to improve their incomes through programmes that provide them with new skills to build community assets and contribute to the development of their areas.”

An additional 100,000 refugees and vulnerable Sudanese will receive monthly voucher assistance as part of WFP’s asset-creation and income-generating activities.

Germany’s contribution will additionally support school feeding for more than 46,500 school children. The grant will also help WFP purchase special nutrition supplements to treat and prevent moderate acute malnutrition among 112,000 pregnant women, nursing mothers and children under five for one year.

Since 2012, Germany has provided a total of US$24.6 million to WFP operations in Sudan, including contributions to the WFP-operated UN Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS). Germany continues to be among WFP Sudan’s top five donors.

“I am glad that Germany’s contribution can help towards improving the living conditions of refugees and asylum seekers and at the same time assist host communities and vulnerable Sudanese in eastern Sudan,” said Germany’s Ambassador to Sudan Rolf Welberts. “This is part of Germany’s continued commitment to address challenges caused by migration in Sudan and the Horn of Africa as a whole.”

WFP operations in Sudan remain among its largest and most complex, providing food assistance to vulnerable people in Darfur and other food insecure groups in the east and border areas to the south.

In 2016, WFP plans to assist 4.6 million vulnerable people in Sudan through a mix of activities which include general food distribution, school feeding, nutrition programmes and food assistance for assets and for training.

WFP is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide, delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience. Each year, WFP assists some 80 million people in around 80 countries.

Follow us on Twitter @wfp_media @wfp_mena

For more information please contact (email address: firstname.lastname@wfp.org):

Amor Almagro, WFP/Khartoum, Tel. +249 183248001 (ext. 2114), Mob. +249 912174853
Abdulaziz Abdulmomin, WFP/Khartoum, Tel. +249 183248001 (ext. 2123), Mob. +249 912167055

Somalia: Joint Rapid Needs Assessment Report on Flood Displaced Population in Balcad - June 2016

20 July 2016 - 3:19pm
Source: Polish Humanitarian Action - Polska Akcja Humanitarna, Shabelle Relief and Development Organisation Country: Somalia

1. Introduction

Polish Humanitarian Action in collaboration with other humanitarian actors from Middle Shabelle - WOCCA, Aid Vision and SHARDO conducted an initial rapid need assessment at villages in Balcad district recently affected by floods; to understand flood impact, assess the existing affected communities’ capacity and give recommendation on the immediate humanitarian response aimed to support communities needs and to avert further loss of communal assets and lives.

2. Executive summary

Seasonal floods which hits riverine areas in Middle Shabelle triggers large scale humanitarian crisis twice every year, low lying areas in the region considerably riverine villages remain vulnerable to flash floods.

The recent ‘Gu’ rains resulted river Shabelle to burst its banks due to shallow depth of the river and the fact that the embankments remain with the same height limiting its capacity to hold excess water causing both over flow and breakage at several points submerging entire villages and farmlands in its path.

Several villages between Balcad and Jowhar districts are among settlements recently affected by flood caused by breakage at Bey-xawo village near Jowhar town, causing displacement of hundreds of people most of them farmers and fishing communities who lost hectares of farmlands and farm products in granaries reserved for future consumption and for sale leaving affected families with no alternative means of livelihood.

Hit by the floods late at night most families were caught off-guard hence not prepared for response and as a result people lost their shelters and households assets washed away forcing population to seek refuge in areas of higher grounds but left behind their shelters inundated by water, households’ belongings washed away, farm products and crops destroyed leaving hundreds of families without shelter hence forced to sleep on bare ground surrounded by stagnant and contaminated water which could soon trigger WASH related diseases.