Crisis Severity The severity score from 1 to 5 is based on 31 indicators aggregated into 3 pillars (impact, conditions, and complexity)4.40 Very lowVery high 5
Impact This measures the impact of the crisis itself, in terms of the scope of its geographical, and human effects.4.40 Very lowVery high 5
Humanitarian Conditions This measures the conditions and status of the people affected, including info about the distribution of severity.4.50 Very lowVery high 5
Complexity This measures the complexity of the crisis, in terms of factors that affect its mitigation or resolution.4.30 Very lowVery high 5
Access Constraints This measures the level of humanitarian access constraints.4.0No constraintsExtreme constraints
CrisisInSight: Global Risk Report
Humanitarian Access Overview
Sudan: Displacement resulting from conflict
Sudan: Humanitarian impact of multiple protracted crises
Conflict, political instability, slow and sudden onset disasters, and poor economic conditions contribute to Sudan’s complex crisis, which has left 13.4 million Sudanese in need of humanitarian assistance (4.1 million more than in June 2020). The crisis has generated food insecurity, malnutrition, and a lack of access to basic services, particularly health services and medicines. The complex crisis has led to the internal displacement of 2.5 million Sudanese since 2010, mainly in Darfur, South Kordofan, and Blue Nile states. Sudan also hosts over 1.1 million refugees, including 763,000 refugees from South Sudan and more than 61,000 Ethiopian refugees, and acts as a key transit country for migrants from the Horn of Africa heading to Europe.?
The political background to Sudan’s complex crisis has been particularly dynamic since 11 April 2019, when President Omar al-Bashir was overthrown in a military coup after a 30-year rule. Since 21 August 2020, an 11-member Sovereign Council has been the collective head of state, consisting of members selected by both the Transitional Military Council and the Forces of Freedom and Change alliance. On 12 February 2021, a new transitional government was sworn in – which included three former leaders of armed groups – to guide the transition of Sudan into democratic elections in 2022. Alongside political developments, conflicts between armed groups have continued, maintaining protection concerns for the population. A recent wave of violence in Darfur came shortly after the mandate of the UN–African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) ended on 31 December 2020.?
Inflation continues to drive increases in prices of essential commodities, making them unaffordable to economically vulnerable populations. Inflation has also sparked nationwide protests that have led to seven states declaring a state of emergency, imposing curfews, shutting down schools, and limiting access to markets.
Sudan has a high exposure to natural hazards. Slow onset disasters, such as drought and the degradation of drylands, strongly deteriorate agricultural conditions and increase food insecurity across the country. Sudan is also prone to sudden onset disasters, such as floods. In 2020, almost 900,000 people were affected in the worst flooding the country had experienced in 100 years, which destroyed homes and farmland, damaged infrastructure, and impeded humanitarian access.?
INFORM measures Sudan's risk of humanitarian crisis and disaster to be high, at 6.9/10, and level of hazard & exposure at 7.3/10.?
15/06: More than 50,000 people have been displaced and 125 killed following clashes related to a land dispute in Kulbus locality, West Darfur between 6-11 June. About 25 villages were torched, livestock looted, and some water access disrupted. The insecurity has also delayed humanitarian assessments and response already planned in the area. People fled within Kulbus or to nearby localities, such as Saraf Omra (North Darfur), where IDPs are staying with relatives and are in need of food, non-food items, and shelter materials. Medical care is needed to respond to displaced children suffering from diarrhoea. Increased insecurity across Sudan and recurrent clashes and displacement, especially in Darfur and in the Kordofan states, are raising concerns among farmers and putting Sudan’s agricultural season at risk of failure. Estimations indicate that 18 million people will likely be food insecure through September, while health officials confirmed that two children have died of starvation in North Darfur state on 6 June.?
07/06: Between 19-24 May, more than 3,000 people were displaced, 14 killed, and five injured following clashes between two tribes in Al-Mamsoka village (As-Sunut locality, West Kordofan). Most displaced people are sheltering in open areas, with the host community, or in public buildings in the same locality. Their needs include emergency shelter, food, and medical care.?
Some aspects of humanitarian access in Sudan have improved, as no incidents of violence against aid workers were recorded to date compared to the three killings reported during the previous reporting period. Despite this, overall access constraints in Sudan persist. The situation has been volatile since the military takeover and the announcement of a nationwide state of emergency on 25 October, as well as the reinstatement of the prime minister on 21 November.*
Despite lifting all COVID-19 restrictions in July, the movement of people and goods has remained restricted because of widespread protests. Demonstrations between 16 September and 1 November caused the shutdown of roads and ports in Port Sudan city. As a result, shortages in medicine, wheat, and fuel were reported in Khartoum.
The suspension of activities in Port Sudan has also hindered UN aid delivery as a result of shortages of fuel and delays in importing goods. Following the military takeover, demonstrations have also been affecting access, as the presence of checkpoints and roadblocks has increased along main roads in Khartoum and neighbouring cities. The general deterioration of the situation has led to a lack of security and communication blackouts, causing delays in the delivery of humanitarian aid.
Tribal clashes in the North Darfur, South Kordofan, and West Darfur states increased in October and November, deteriorating security for humanitarian workers and civilians in the area. Floods affected the majority of states in Sudan between August–September, caused damage to infrastructure, hindered transportation and supply chains, and resulted in an increase in item prices.
*The situation has been volatile since mid-October, and access constraints are increasing. The humanitarian access status in Sudan at the time of publication of this report might not be reflected in the narrative.
Read more in the latest ACAPS Humanitarian Access Overview.
Sudan’s economic crisis has worsened following the October 2021 military coup, foreign assistance cuts, and rising prices and taxes.? Since mid-2021, the country has been following a three-year economic reform programme with the International Monetary Fund, which requires the Government to reduce subsidies on retail electricity and fuel prices.? In January 2022, the Government reduced subsidies on electricity, resulting in a 460% increase in electricity costs for the agriculture sector.? In February, fuel prices increased by nearly 13%, aside from a 400% spike in October 2020.? Further increases in the retail costs of electricity and fuel are likely throughout 2022, especially as global fuel prices rise as a result of Russia’s war against Ukraine.?
Higher electricity prices have already affected farmers in northern Sudan, who depend on electricity to irrigate crops. Farmers protested and blocked the Shiryan El-Shamal highway (linking Egypt to Sudan) between 9 January and 16 February and demanded a freeze on electricity prices. The blockade ended when they reached an agreement with the Government.? The Government has exempted the agriculture sector from the increase until 30 April. If the Government cancels or does not renew the exemption, similar blockade events will likely resume in May.? As announced in past protests, farmers could likely pressure the Government to reach a new agreement by disrupting the electrical supply line from Merowe dam in northern Sudan.? The dam contributes to Sudan’s electricity production.? Any disruption will likely result in shortages in electricity across Sudan, where power cuts already occur every three to four days.
A possible spike in electricity prices in May will likely affect agricultural activities in northern Sudan that depend on irrigation by electricity-run machines.? On the other hand, fuel shortages will likely affect and reduce agricultural output in states highly dependent on fuel for agriculture, land preparation, and planting, such as Al Gezira.? Below-average harvest, combined with high inflation, could lead to a spike in food prices. More frequent power cuts and increased electricity and fuel prices would affect small businesses like plumbing and carpentry, which do not usually own generators, possibly resulting in closure. There have already been reports from small-business owners of income losses of up to 50% as a result of power cuts.? The impact on livelihoods will likely push people to adopt negative coping strategies, such as reducing meals.? Economic decline and inflation are among the key drivers of acute food insecurity for an estimated six million people between October 2021 and February 2022. An electricity and fuel crisis would possibly result in 3.5 million2 people facing severe food insecurity. Especially during the 2022 lean season (May–October), the number of people facing severe acute food insecurity could go back to June–September 2021 levels.?
Update from the October 2021 Risk Analysis
LOW RISK LEVEL
Escalation of conflict between Sudan’s Rapid Support Forces and Ethiopian National Defense Force in Al Fashaga district, Gedaref state, results in violence against civilians, displacement, disruption of agricultural activities, and protection concerns
Except for a few clashes between Sudanese and Ethiopian troops in the border area of Al Fashaga district, this risk did not materialise. On 27 November 2021, members of the Ethiopian army launched attacks in Al Fashaga district to intimidate farmers and spoil the harvest season. The attack killed at least 20 soldiers of the Sudanese Armed Forces.? Ethiopia denied that their forces engaged with Sudanese soldiers.? Clashes between Sudanese and Ethiopian troops resumed between 30 November and 1 December, but there were no casualties or damages to crops.? The third filling of the GERD dam was suggested as a trigger of increasing tensions between Sudan and Ethiopia, leading to clashes in Al Fashaga, but it did not take place in early 2022. The Ethiopian Government announced rescheduling it to July, after the removal of 17,000 hectares of forests around the dam in February in preparation for the third filling.? There are no reports of crops failing in Al Fashaga or clashes displacing people.
Sudan has been facing a socioeconomic crisis caused by the unstable political situation that followed the widespread demonstrations against the politics of former president Omar Hassan al-Bashir in April 2019. The military takeover of the transitional government in October 2021 has further deteriorated the economic situation in Sudan as it resulted in the suspension of international aid, on which Sudan has been depending. Since October 2021, the Sudanese pound has lost about a third of its value, inflation rates have been increasing, there have been shortages of hard currency, and there are no sufficient foreign reserves.?
On 8 March, the government decided for a floating exchange rate instead of fixed, following economic shocks. When the government had devalued the currency previously, in February 2021, the country saw a further increase in prices of food, fuel, electricity, transportation, and medicine. Between January–March 2022, the price of fuel has increased fourfold. As at end of March, fuel prices were 85% higher than October 2021. Wheat prices have also been increasing and affecting the ability of people below the poverty line to buy bread. In January 2018, the Sudanese government cut subsidies on wheat, which caused the price of one loaf of bread to double and drove people to protest. In March 2022, prices of wheat are estimated to have increased by 180% compared to March 2021. Wheat prices continue to rise because of inflation, currency depreciation, and the disruption to the wheat supply chain caused by conflict in Ukraine and sanctions over Russia. Sudan imports more than 85% of its wheat supplies from the two countries (7% from Ukraine and 80% from Russia).?
Food security: Severe floods in 2020, COVID-19, and the economic crisis have had a negative effect on agricultural production, which has contributed to increased food insecurity in Sudan. An estimated 7.1 million people faced Crisis or worse (IPC Phase 3 and higher) levels of food insecurity between October–December 2020, a 22% increase from the same period in 2019. IDPs, returnees, households living in conflict areas, and refugees are among the people most affected by food insecurity.?
Health: 9.2 million people are in need of health assistance across the country, including 1.3 million IDPs and 1.1 million refugees. Approximately 81% of the population do not have access to a functional health centre within two hours of their home, and many clinics are closing because of a lack of funds and staff and because of the increase in COVID-19 cases since November 2020. By the end of 2020, the number of functional primary healthcare centres had decreased by 40% across the country. Severe medicine shortages are reported countrywide. The lack of medicines is compounded by a 200% increase in the cost of health services compared to 2020.?
Protection: Approximately 4.6 million people are in need of protection across Sudan. Since the beginning of 2021, Sudan has seen an increase in intercommunal violence in the Darfur regions (West, South, and North). Violence in the Darfur regions between 15–18 January forced more people to flee their homes than in the whole of 2020.?
- Lack of regular gender-sensitive needs assessments in all sectors.
- Unclear information on access to public services in rural and remote areas.
- Information about refugees, their exact whereabouts, and the severity of their needs is limited.
- The last population census by the government was conducted in 2008, meaning that information on population numbers heavily relies on estimations or extrapolated data.
- Lack of updated information on education, including attendance rates and WASH infrastructure in schools.
- Comprehensive data on areas across Sudan affected by explosive ordnance is lacking, making mapping of risk areas challenging.
- Lack of information on the access of people with disabilities to basic services, including healthcare.