Sudan has faced severe economic challenges since the beginning of 2018. The elimination of wheat and flour subsidies in February 2018, coupled with continual devaluations of the Sudanese pound (SDG) caused shortages of essential commodities and hard currency. The economic crisis is disrupting public services, impacting agricultural activities, and resulting in dramatic price increases for staple foods. Deteriorating living standards triggered renewed countrywide protests since mid-December 2018. Calls for President Al-Bashir to resign are rising and protection concerns are increasing as protests are often violently dispersed, leaving many dead or injured and at least 1,000 demonstrators arrested.
Households across Sudan, including most IDPs, are struggling to meet their basic needs as staple food prices for wheat, millet and sorghum increased by 150-200% in 2018. Limited access to food, reduced purchasing power, and few livelihood alternatives for farmers have left an estimated 5.76 million people facing severe levels of food insecurity, especially in Khartoum, Red Sea, Blue Nile, White Nile, South Kordofan, Kassala, Gedaref and Darfur states. Priority needs are food and health, as well as livelihood support and the availability of educational services.
Heavy rainfall from 23–25 July caused flooding in El Nuhud town, West Kordofan state. An inter-agency rapid assessment concluded on 2 August estimated that more than 23,000 people had been affected in El Nuhud alone. Shelters and WASH infrastructure have been significantly damaged. The ongoing humanitarian response has been insufficient to meet the needs in El Nuhud. At 13 August, at least 4,000 people are reported to remain in need of humanitarian assistance, particularly emergency shelter and WASH assistance. Other areas are affected but beyond the scope of this note.
Conflict between the government and armed groups in Darfur has been ongoing since 2003. After a brief respite following a ceasefire in October 2016, fighting resumed as of April 2017. The government has renewed the ceasefire on 2 July for a further four months. The armed groups they are clashing with, the JEM and the SLM-MM, also signed a ceasefire agreement on 3 May. Despite these declarations, clashes occurred in both May and June, highlighting a lack of commitment to the ceasefire agreements on both sides.
A cholera outbreak that started in Blue Nile state in August 2016 began to spread rapidly as of April this year. Conservative estimates suggest a minimum of between 15,000-23,000 people infected, with 280-820 deaths. It is currently affecting Gedarif, White Nile, Khartoum, Sennar, River Nile, North Kordofan, and Gezira states. White Nile is host to a large South Sudanese refugee population and has had the highest number of cases so far. A state of emergency has not yet been declared and response has been limited. An underfunded health system and poor WASH facilities have contributed to the spread of infection.
Floods during the rainy season from June until at least October will affect about 200,000 people, mostly in southern Sudan. Particularly vulnerable are the displaced in southern Sudan, where there are 2.3 million IDPs and about 400,000 South Sudanese, 110,000 of whom arrived in 2017. Floods will damage key WASH infrastructure and increase the caseload of diseases including cholera and malaria. Houses will be destroyed and flooding will damage crops and isolate some localities, driving up food prices.
More than 173,500 refugees and migrants have reached Italy so far in 2016, around 29,000 more than in the same period last year. While the vast majority still use Libya as the departure point to Europe, more are using Egypt and Algeria. The nationality of arrivals is evolving, with fewer Eritreans and more Egyptians.
Protection is a primary concern. The estimated number of deaths on the Central Mediterranean route has grown to over 4,200 people this year, compared to less than 2,900 at the same point in 2015. Many people die on the journey over land to north Africa, but this number is not known. Migrants and refugees also face detention, sexual exploitation, and forced labour. The number of unaccompanied minors arriving in Italy is growing.
Violence between government forces and the Sudan Liberation Movement led by Abdel Wahid Al Nur (SLM-AW) has persisted in Darfur’s Jebel Marra region since 15 January 2016. At least 100,000 people have been displaced. Over 60,000 people have arrived at three locations in North Darfur including the UNAMID base in Sortoni, IDP sites in Tawila locality and Kebkabiya. An unknown number of people have been displaced to villages and towns in Central Darfur, where severe access restrictions have prevented verification. Displaced people are also hiding in the mountains and at risk of ongoing fighting. Women and children comprise 90% of the displaced. Civilians have been indiscriminately targeted. IDPs are in critical need of humanitarian assistance across all sectors.
This report compares current humanitarian crises based on their level of humanitarian access. Affected populations in more than 40 countries are not getting proper humanitarian assistance due to access constraints. Out of 44 countries included in the report, nearly half of them are currently facing critical humanitarian access constraints, with four countries (Eritrea, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen) being considered as inaccessible. Moderate humanitarian access constraints are an issue in eight countries, and 15 face low humanitarian access constraints.
Humanitarian Overview 2018 examines major humanitarian crises worldwide to identify likely developments and corresponding needs. The report focuses on countries where the crisis trend indicates a deterioration in 2018 and a corresponding increase in need. It also includes countries where crisis is not predicted to worsen, but is likely to remain severe: Ethiopia, Iraq, Nigeria, Palestine, Sudan, and Syria. Across these countries, food security, displacement, health, and protection are expected
to be the most pressing humanitarian needs in 2018.
The Crisis Overview 2015: Humanitarian Trends and Risks for 2016, outlines the countries considered to be in greatest humanitarian need as we approach the end of 2015.
Based on our weekly Global Emergency Overview (GEO), and three years of data on humanitarian needs across 150 countries, we have identified eleven countries where humanitarian needs are likely to be highest in 2016, as well as seven that merit attention, as they face a potential spike in needs. A final section considers the potential impact of the current El Niño event across a number of regions.