• Crisis Severity ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Impact ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Humanitarian Conditions ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Complexity ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Access Constraints ?
    No constraints
    Extreme constraints

Key figures

  • 46,400,000 Total population [?]
  • 4,892,000 People displaced [?]
  • 14,300,000 People in Need [?]
  • 1,107,000 Refugees in Sudan [?]

Special Reports




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.?

Latest Developments


06/01: Intercommunal clashes between two South Sudanese groups in Al-Meganis border area in White Nile state has displaced about 280 people, killed two people, and injured another two. The displaced people are staying with the host community in At Tadamon locality in South Kordofan state. Their needs include food, emergency shelter, and non-food items.?

05/01: Nearly 2 million people in need of food assistance will likely be affected by the World Food Programme’s suspension of operations in North Darfur state due to insecurity. Between 28-30 December, three WFP warehouses were attacked and looted in El Fasher, the capital of North Darfur. More than 5,000 metric tons of food and nutrition supplies were stolen. Dismantling of warehouse structures and destruction of assets were also reported. A man and a pregnant woman were killed by stray bullets during the lootings, and an unknown number of people were injured. Lack of security has forced WFP to suspend its operations until further notice. Authorities in North Darfur imposed a night curfew from 29 December until further notice, to restore security in the state.?

Humanitarian Access


high constraints

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.


Escalation of conflict between Sudan’s Rapid Support Forces and ENDF in Al Fashaga district, Gedaref state, results in violence against civilians, displacement, disruption of agricultural activities, and protection concerns Latest update: 26/10/2021


Highly unlikely Somewhat likely Highly likely


Very low Moderate Major


The Al Fashaga district is an agricultural area disputed between Sudan and Ethiopia since 1902. Sudanese troops moved into the district in December 2020 and took control of over 90% of the land, evicting Ethiopian farmers and disrupting a land-use agreement that had been in place for over a decade?.

Resident Sudanese and Ethiopian farmers depend on the Al Fashaga district for agricultural livelihoods and goods?. In Ethiopia, half of Amhara’s population and close to 80% of Tigray’s population are projected to be in crisis or above food insecurity levels (IPC Phase 3 or worse) between July–September 2021?. With the harvest season approaching in October, clashes are likely to re-escalate between Sudanese and Ethiopian farmers. In October 2020, armed groups from Amhara launched attacks in Al Fashaga to prevent Sudanese farmers from harvesting?.

Rivalry over agricultural resources is likely to increase tensions between Sudan and Ethiopia, already running high in 2021 with mutual accusations of destabilising the security situation, which has deteriorated sharply as a result of the expanding conflict in the Ethiopian regions bordering Sudan?. Tensions are likely to be further aggravated in 2022 in the lead-up to the third filling of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam. The Ethiopian army reported killing 50 people attempting to cross from Sudan to attack the dam in early September. This clash has further escalated tensions between the two countries even though Sudan rejected any accusations that it supports groups fighting the Ethiopian Government?. Lack of agreement over the functioning of the dam is likely to trigger more insecurity and potential violence?.

The Al Fashaga district is a strategic area for both Sudan’s and Ethiopia’s recovery and economic development. Sudan encourages more farmers to settle in the district by investing in road and agricultural infrastructure linking Al Fashaga with greater Sudan?. Renewed escalation of tensions between Sudan and Ethiopia will likely result in a flare-up of violence in the district and clashes on the border between Sudan’s Rapid Support Forces and ENDF.


Flare-up of violence in the Al Fashaga district of Gedaref state is likely to result in increased humanitarian needs and civilian casualties and the displacement of at least 36,000 people in Sudan?.

The harvest season is likely to be disrupted and crops damaged, increasing the scale and severity of food insecurity. Over 6,000 people (25% of the population) are likely to become food-insecure if violence erupts in the district?.

Protection concerns for displaced women and girls staying in overcrowded shelters are serious, as they might face sexual violence and harassment. More than 13,000 Ethiopian and South Sudanese refugees in Al Fashaga would be caught in the clashes and need more protection services?. In Ethiopia, clashes on the border are likely to affect movement from western Tigray and Amhara to Sudan, leaving asylum seekers stranded in conflict areas. The increase in fatalities and injuries is likely to overwhelm health facilities in the affected areas. Disease outbreaks related to water and vector-borne disease and COVID-19 are likely and will further exhaust health centres’ capacities?.

An estimated 3,000–5,000 people are likely to be displaced if violence breaks out?. Displaced people are likely to have increased shelter needs, as IDPs will stay in open areas, with relatives, or in school buildings?.

Note: This risk was initially identified by ACAPS in September 2021. On 25 October, Sudan’s military dissolved the transitional government. Although it is still unclear how, this new significant development could affect the probability of the hazard materialising and/or the expected humanitarian impact?.

Read this risk

Update from the October 2020 Global Risk Analysis


Severe economic deterioration leads to an inability of the state to cope with immense economic and food insecurity

Severe economic deterioration and a significant increase in food insecurity, as identified in the October 2020 Global Risk Analysis, has gradually been materialising. Despite it being the harvest period, staple food prices continued increasing atypically between December 2020-January 2021. The prices of non-cereal food items increased by 20-40% between January-February 2021 and were 250-450% higher than in February 2020.? The rapid depreciation of the Sudanese pound has also resulted in a 60-85% drop in household purchasing power. The situation led to protests in January and February across Sudan and the declaration of a state of emergency in seven regions of the country.?

8.2 million people are projected to need food security and livelihoods assistance in 2021, compared to 6.2 million in 2020.? The most recent IPC analysis (covering October-December 2020) projected 7.1 million people (16% of the analysed population) to face Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and higher levels of food insecurity.? Conflict-affected areas continue to be particularly impacted by food insecurity. Although the economy has continued to deteriorate as projected, in February the government implemented some measures meant to improve the situation; these included the decision to devaluate the Sudanese pound in an attempt to merge the gap between the managed and parallel markets.? In December 2020, the US removed Sudan from the state sponsors of terrorism list, which may make it easier for Sudan to access debt relief packages and other multilateral loans and financing.?

Key Priorities


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.?



The Sudanese government has confirmed that, as at 3 March 2021, 30,500 people had contracted the virus and there had been 1,895 COVID-19-related deaths since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. All 18 states have reported cases, with Khartoum, Al Jazirah, and Gedaref among the hardest hit. Although Khartoum state accounts for most of all reported cases in the country, the majority of all COVID-19-related deaths have been reported outside the capital.

Sudan’s health system was already under extreme stress prior to the pandemic and has been further stretched to prevent, contain, and treat COVID-19. Clinics and hospitals lack critical medicines as they can no longer afford to stock them because of the economic crisis and disruptions in the supply chain.

COVID-19 is having direct and indirect impacts on food access in Sudan. Some families have lost their incomes and many poor households have lost physical access to areas where they typically earn an income, including markets. People are also facing higher living costs because of increasing medical costs related to the pandemic, as well as the ongoing economic crisis.?

The ACAPS team is monitoring the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information related to the outbreak, see the ACAPS COVID-19 Project.

Disease outbreaks


Several diseases are endemic in Sudan such as malaria, cholera, dengue fever, and chikungunya, and there is a tendency for annual outbreaks to occur across several states. In October 2020, malaria reached epidemic levels in 11 out of the 18 states of Sudan. In September 2020, Sudan also faced an outbreak of viral hemorrhagic fevers, as well as the reemergence of polio in at least seven states. In November 2020, Sudan reported 103 cases of chikungunya.?

The main causes of disease outbreaks in Sudan are poor access to safe drinking water and sanitation facilities, and low vaccination coverage. 63% of the total population do not have access to basic sanitation, 23% lack access to handwashing facilities with soap and water, and 40% have no access to basic drinking water services. The risk of transmission is especially high among the nearly 2 million IDPs and 1.1 million refugees living in collective sites or host communities across the country, as well as among people living in urban slums. The risk of disease outbreaks remains high in 2021. ?


Desert Locusts


The outbreak of desert locusts in Sudan threatened the country’s food supply throughout most of 2020. The current outbreak that is affecting East Africa is the worst in 70 years. During the first months of 2021, hopper bands (aligned swarms of locusts) were present in Sufiya, Tomala, and Aiterba (Red Sea state) and along the Nile Valley. Adult groups and swarms may continue to lay eggs along the Red Sea coast, where hatching and band formation are expected during March 2021. There is a risk that small swarms will continue to move inland to the Atbara River and Nile Valley, which could be aggravated by additional swarms arriving from Eritrea. The continued presence of desert locusts has negatively impacted the food security of already food-insecure populations.?

Information Gaps

  • 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.