Coinciding with COVID-19, an upsurge of desert locusts is taking place in the Horn of Africa, Arabian Peninsula and Southwest Asia, with risk of spreading to the Sahel region of Africa if it is not stopped by July. The desert locust is the world's most dangerous migratory pest.
At the beginning of April, the 2020 edition of the Global Report on Food Crises was issued, presenting a stark warning for the future. In 2019 – prior to the COVID-19 pandemic – 135 million people experienced “crisis” and worse levels of acute food insecurity. A further 183 million were on the edge in “stressed” food security conditions.
Today, nearly 55 million people in the Arab States, 13.2 percent of the population, are hungry and the situation is particularly worrying in countries affected by conflicts and violence: Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Sudan, and Yemen.
A new report launched today by Somalia—titled the Somalia Health and Demographic Survey (SHDS) Report 2020—offers the country’s decision makers and stakeholders vital information on the health and lives of Somali women of childbearing ages and children.
Roughly half of all Somali households rely on remittances to cover basic needs such as food, water and basic health care. According to Somali money transfer operators (MTOs), remittances have already declined substantially since the onset of COVID-19 due to economic pressures on members of the Somali diaspora.
When mobility drivers are scrutinised and climate change is found to play a role in movement, it remains difficult to determine the extent of its influence. Misleading claims about mass migration induced by climate change continue to surface in both academia and policy.
The worst desert locust outbreak in decades is underway in the Greater Horn of Africa, where tens of thousands of hectares of cropland and pasture have been damaged in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia with potentially severe consequences for agriculture-based livelihoods in contexts where food security is already fragile.
In conflict and disaster, children suffer first and suffer most. Today, one in four of the world’s children lives in a conflict or disaster zone — a fact that should shake each of us to our core. All of these children face an uncertain future. Around the world, more than 30 million children have been displaced by conflict.